Health Department schedules flu vaccine clinics

Staff Writer
Pawhuska Journal-Capital

The Osage County Health Department announced today its seasonal influenza vaccination clinic schedule for the upcoming flu season. Clinics will begin Oct. 20th.

Clinic days and times are as follows: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Flu vaccine is recommended for everyone 6 months of age and older and will be available for anyone who wants to be protected from influenza.

Persons at high risk of serious complications from flu are strongly encouraged to get the flu vaccine, including pregnant women and people with asthma, diabetes, chronic heart and lung disease, or other chronic conditions.

Parents and family members of babies less than 6 months of age and people who live with or care for anyone at high risk for complications from the flu, including health care workers, should also get the vaccine.

“It may take time and a special effort to get the flu vaccine, but it is well worth the effort when you consider how serious the flu can be for anyone of any age,” said Bill Pierson, regional director for the Osage County Health Department. “We encourage everyone in Osage County to take the time to get the flu vaccine.”

The Osage County Health Department will be providing flu vaccine using the following fee schedule:

• There will be no charge for families whose income is less than 185 percent of the federal poverty level. However, if you have health insurance, please bring your card. The insurance company will be billed for the vaccine and an administration fee.

• There will be no charge for adults 65 years of age and older. Adults 65 and older should bring their Medicare Card or other health insurance card.

• Also, there is no charge for children 18 years of age and younger who have no health insurance, whose health insurance does not cover flu vaccine, who are eligible for SoonerCare, or who are Native American or Alaskan natives.

• All others will be charged a fee of $25.00 to cover the cost of the flu vaccine and the cost of administering the vaccine.

The Osage County Health Department will accept SoonerCare, Medicare, all private health insurance, cash, checks, or credit cards as payment for flu vaccine.

In addition to getting a flu vaccination, persons 65 and older and those with chronic health conditions should ask their doctor if they should be vaccinated against pneumococcal pneumonia, if they have not already received a dose. Pneumococcal pneumonia is a common and potentially serious complication of the flu. Unlike the influenza vaccine, the pneumococcal vaccine does not need to be given every year.

For more information about the upcoming flu clinics at the Osage County Health Department, call (918) 287-3740.