POSTED: Wednesday, September 21, 2011 - 3:14pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, September 21, 2011 - 4:37pm
TYLER — As flu season approaches, experts are urging people to go ahead and get that shot to prevent illness.
"Now is the time you should start getting your flu shot," said John Moore of Trinity Mother Frances Hospitals and Clinics. "The CDC is recommending six months and up, unless you have a diagnosed allergy to eggs."
If you are allergic to eggs, consult your doctor before getting vaccinated.
Why is getting your shot this early necessary?
"There is always a shortage of vaccine which you want to try and get ahead of ," said Walgreens pharmacist Russell Krenek. "Also, it takes up to two weeks for your body to get immunization ... you want to get it so when the flu actually does start hitting, you're already covered."
Though the vaccines sometimes vary from year to year, experts said the vaccine is identical to last year's shot .
"It has some of the older strains in it; it also has the H1N1 strain in it still this year. Also, when the scientists and researchers come up with it, they try to predict future strains and put those strains into the vaccine."
Moore says it is especially important for young children and older adults to get vaccinated.
Some companies, like Trinity Mother Frances, are now even requiring their employees to get vaccinated .
Contrary to the rumors, flu shots don't make you get the flu.
"It could mean you got sick from something other than that particular strain of the flu and you may have wound up getting a different kind of virus (instead)," Moore said.
Prices for flu shots vary, depending on your insurance. If you have Medicare Part D, it's free.
Thursday, flu shots will be available at the opening day of the East Texas State Fair .
Angelina County will also hold its annual Drive-Thru Flu Vaccine Day Thursday .