The Flu and COVID vaccines continue to be offered each Wednesday afternoon at Veterans Memorial Hospital Community and Home Care/Allamakee Public Health. Flu shots are recommended for all those who have not yet received the vaccine and will be effective throughout the rest of the flu season.
According to the Iowa Department of Health and Human Services, flu vaccines are proven to help prevent millions of illnesses and have been shown to reduce the risk of having to go to the doctor by 40-60%. COVID-19 vaccines help protect by creating an antibody response without having to experience potentially severe illness or post-COVID conditions. Although it is still possible to get sick after being vaccinated, flu and COVID immunizations are proven to help prevent severe illness, which can be lifesaving.
Veterans Memorial Hospital Community and Home Care are continuing to offer both COVID and flu shot clinics every Wednesday afternoon. Appointments can be made by calling 563-568-5660.
Allamakee Public Health offers Comirnaty (Pfizer) COVID vaccine. Anyone can receive Pfizer vaccine even if Moderna vaccine was given in the past. According to the CDC, it is safe and effective to receive multiple immunizations, such as the flu and COVID-19 vaccines, during the same vaccination appointment.
Medicare, Medicaid and most insurances DO cover the cost of the flu and COVID vaccine. Billing for vaccinations will be completed by the Community and Home Care staff, but participants will need to bring their Medicare number or private insurance card with them. If insurance does not cover these immunizations, they can be purchased instead. The cost for a flu shot is $35 with the Sr. High Dose is $75. For those uninsured or underinsured (age 19+) there is a program called Bridges to Access which provides COVID-19 vaccine and may charge an administration fee, up to $19.68. The site must waive this fee if the person is unable to pay the requested administration fee.
Flu and COVID vaccines are effective at saving and protecting lives and health system dollars. They reduce the potential for serious illness while also reducing strain on healthcare resources and the workforce. Vaccination is especially important in the fall and winter when respiratory diseases circulate in high volume across the country. On average, 26.8 million Americans become infected with the flu every year. These vaccines work by activating the body’s immune response, which can protect from severe respiratory illness.
The CDC now recommends that everyone age 6 months of age and older get vaccinated against the flu every year. For those who are at higher risk of developing serious flu complications, flu vaccination is especially important. These groups include:
- Adults 65 and older
- Adults with certain chronic health conditions, such as asthma, heart disease, diabetes, and chronic kidney disease
- Pregnant people
- Children younger than 5 years, but especially those younger than 2 years old
Beginning with the 2023-24 season, all updated flu vaccines have been proven safe and effective for people with any form of an egg allergy. Former safety measures are no longer recommended for flu vaccination of people with an egg allergy. However, all flu vaccines should continue to be given in settings where allergic reactions can be recognized and treated quickly. The flu vaccines have also been updated to include the strains that are most likely to circulate during this year’s flu season.
For more information or to make an appointment, please call the Veterans Memorial Hospital Community and Home Care Department at (563) 568-5660. Veterans Memorial Hospital Community and Home Care is located on the upper level of Veterans Memorial Hospital.