September 15, 2016
For More Information Contact
Lorrie Andrew-Spear, VDH-Northern Region Public Information Officer – 703-530-2627
Saturday, Oct. 1 – Flu Shot Clinic Starts at 10 a.m.
(Fredericksburg, Va.)— The Virginia Department of Health’s Rappahannock Area Health District will offer free flu shots on Saturday, Oct. 1, beginning at 10 a.m. during the State Fair of Virginia at the Meadow Event Park. The Flu Clinic will take place in the Farm Bureau Center Exhibition Hall on Festival Loop. Only 400 doses of vaccine will be available, and will be offered to anyone 18 years and older on a first-come, first-served basis, until 7 p.m. or until the supply of flu shots runs out.
Influenza, or “the flu,” is a highly-contagious respiratory disease. Typical flu symptoms include fever, dry cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, headache, muscle aches and fatigue.
“Everyone should be vaccinated for influenza annually,” said Rappahannock Area Health District Director Brooke Rossheim, M.D., M.P.H. “Vaccination is the best way to prevent influenza and its potentially severe complications, and this on-site clinic offers a fast and efficient way to vaccinate a large number of people in a short time.”
The vaccination is especially important for people at higher risk of complications from the flu. These groups include:
- Pregnant and postpartum women, or those who will be pregnant during the influenza season;
- Persons over 65 years of age, including residents of nursing homes and long-term care facilities;
- People who have chronic lung or heart problems, including asthma; and
- People who have other serious medical conditions, such as diabetes, kidney disease, cystic fibrosis, anemia, cancer, weak immune systems (including those with HIV) or a seizure disorder.
Each year in the U.S. approximately 200,000 people are hospitalized due to flu illness, and flu-related deaths range from 3,000 to 49,000 each year, averaging 24,000 per year over the last three decades.
To minimize your risk of catching the flu and passing it on to others, follow these simple steps:
- Get a flu shot each year;
- Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly, for at least 20 seconds;
- Cover your cough by using a disposable tissue or coughing into your sleeve, not your hand; and
- Stay home when you are sick.
For more information, call the Rappahannock Area Health District at 540-899-4797 or visit www.vdh.virginia.gov.