East Texas health officials say get your flu shot

East Texas health officials say get your flu shot

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Another flu season is upon us. So far, several reports of people who have tested positive with the flu have already been reported to state officials.

Last year the CDC reports that the flu vaccine was estimated to be 40 percent effective. This year, they continue to study the effectiveness of the vaccine.

“We do have over 200 residents, so it’s important along with getting your flu shot which is the best way in preventing to get the flu,” said Clark Hill, a registered nurse who oversees residents at the Pinecrest Retirement Community.

Experts said people 65 and older are at a greater risk for complications from the flu.

“They do have a lower immune system compared to what younger a healthy individual would have,” Hill said.

This year, the CDC said the vaccine has updated the flu vaccines to better match circulating viruses. Last year, the agency said the vaccine was 40 percent effective, meaning it reduced the person’s overall risk of getting the illness by that number. In addition, the CDC reported the highest ever recorded number of people of all ages being hospitalized.

Health officials urge you to get your flu shot and say you do not get the flu if you get the vaccine.

“You can get symptoms from taking the flu shot, they’re usually mild, they can include soreness at the injection site and redness and you may have some mild symptoms like fever body aches but you do not get the flu from getting the flu shot,” said Jamie Rice, an infection control director and registered nurse.

Rice said to keep one thing in mind.

It takes 10 to 14 days to once you get your flu vaccine for those antibodies to build up," Rice said. “So you may very well come in contact with the flu and actually get the flu virus even after you’ve had your flu vaccine within that 10 to 14-day time frame.”

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