Flu Shot Facts: What to Know Before Getting Your Seasonal Stick

Marianna- Marcela Gaviria was picking up her daughter Miranda's prescription at CVS pharmacy. Miranda had the flu.

"She does have the flu now, she's sick" Gaviria told us. We asked the mom if she though a flu shot could have prevented her daughter's illness, "I don't think so" she said." Gaviria was not alone in her thinking.

"I think it doesn't work" Gaviria explained. "When I got it five years ago I just got sick. So, I'm not planning to take it."

Could it be possible the flu shot actually gave Gaviria the flu? Not according to Jackson County Health Department Clinic Supervisor, Alice Pate. "The flu shot cannot give you the flu. It's a dead virus" Pate said.

She would know- Pate had already given her fair share of flu shots this season. "The flu shot is very important to prevent the flu, which can even lead to death if you get sick enough with it" Pate told us.

The shot has been recommended by the Center for Disease Control for anyone 6 months and older and particularly for people with a chronic illness, pregnant women, children and the elderly.

"The flu shot is very effective" Pate said. "I would say probably 75-80 percent effective. The flu shot is actually based off the three strains of flu [the CDC] feels will be most common this year. It's made to prevent you from getting those three strains."

Even with the shot, a person could still be vulnerable to hundreds of other strains. But, the CDC still recommended everyone got vaccinated. Pate also made some recommendations of her own.

"Wash your hands and try to not touch your mouth, your nose or your eyes with your hands."

Pate also told us the shot was free for children at the Jackson County Health Department.


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