The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department (LLCHD) recommends everyone who is at least 6 months of age receive a flu vaccine every year. The vaccine is especially important for those at high risk of developing serious complications like pneumonia if they get the flu. Those include pregnant women, those age 65 and older, and those with certain medical conditions including asthma, diabetes and chronic lung disease.
People who live with or care for others who at high risk of developing complications also should be vaccinated every year. This includes household contacts and caregivers of people with medical conditions including asthma, diabetes and chronic lung disease.
The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat and lungs. It can cause mild to severe illness, and can lead to death. Getting vaccinated each year provides the best protection against influenza. An annual flu vaccine is needed because flu viruses change constantly, and new flu viruses may appear each year. The flu vaccine is formulated each year to keep up with the flu viruses as they change. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection.
The flu season typically runs from October through April, but it varies and can run into May. Flu activity commonly peaks in the U.S. in January or February.
LLCHD will provide flu vaccine to low-income, uninsured adults and certain uninsured children beginning October 1. To be eligible for a flu vaccine at LLCHD, children must be between the ages of 6 months through 18 years and meet one or more of these criteria:
LLCHD requires appointments for flu vaccinations. For more information, call 402-441-8065 or visit lincoln.ne.gov (keyword: flu).