Community members facing the COVID-19 pandemic are turning to Gundersen Health System in record numbers to vaccinate against influenza.
Gundersen staff immunized more than 1,500 people during the first two days of the Flu Shot Clinics Oct. 12 and 13 in the health system's locations in La Crosse and Onalaska. Another 600 were expected to receive the flu vaccination by Oct. 15 at the same two locations.
"This year, there is more of a focus from patients wanting to do their part to help their community and neighbors stay healthy," said Clinical Manager Shelly Niedfeldt, who oversees Gundersen's Flu Shot Clinics in La Crosse and Onalaska. "Due to the high prevalence of COVID-19, patients state it is more important to get the flu shot earlier than they have in the past. The flu shot is something within their control to help reduce the risk of illness and they would like to take that opportunity."
Children at home for virtual learning allow parents to visit the Flu Shot Clinics earlier than previous years, Niedfeldt said.
Flu Shot Clinics are open on Gundersen's La Crosse Campus on Level 1 of the Main Clinic in Imaging Services and Level 4 of the Gundersen Onalaska Clinic Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through Nov. 25.
No appointment is necessary.
Influenza can have serious implications and can lead to death, especially for the young, sick and elderly. Getting vaccinated not only protects you, but those closest to you also. While the flu vaccine is not 100% effective, we do know that those who are vaccinated and who later get an influenza virus are less likely to have severe illness, to be hospitalized or to have serious complications, Niedfeldt said.
To learn more, visit gundersenhealth.org/flu
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