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Health Team

Flu shots already available

Posted August 11, 2010 2:02 p.m. EDT
Updated August 11, 2010 5:50 p.m. EDT

— Some people are already getting vaccinated for the flu.

“All of our stores have been starting to do at least three or four shots a day,” Walgreens pharmacist Samarah Javadian said Wednesday.

Javadian, who works at the Walgreens at 6901 Glenwood Ave., said her store received the shots last week.

CVS and Kerr Drug will begin offering vaccines in the next couple of weeks.

“It’s certainly not too early to start thinking about the flu shot,” WRAL Health Team’s Dr. Allen Mask said.

Already, federal officials are warning states to be on the lookout for the seasonal flu. They are tracking two flu outbreaks in Iowa.

Mask said it's usually best to get a flu shot in the fall.

“But the experts tell us you need to get the vaccine when it's available, when you're thinking about it, when you've got some free time,” he said.

The World Health Organization said Tuesday that the H1N1 pandemic is over, but if it comes back, this year's flu shot will protect against it.

The shot includes H1N1 and two other flu strains that experts think may circulate this winter.

Mask agrees with federal officials, who say everyone older than 6 months should get a flu shot.

“Except for those who are allergic to eggs or for some reason can't take the vaccine, all of us should plan to get the vaccine this year,” he said.

Flu shots typically cost $20 to $30 at pharmacies. Drug stores usually get flu vaccine before doctors receive it.

“It’s better to get it earlier than to wait till the last minute,” Javadian said.