The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older get a flu vaccine each year. “Flu season” in the United States begins as early as October and lasts as late as May. An annual seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to reduce your risk of getting sick with seasonal flu and spreading it to others. When more people get vaccinated against the flu, less flu can spread through the community.
Anyone can get the flu (even healthy people) and serious problems related to the flu can happen at any age, but some people are at a higher risk of developing serious flu-related complications if they get sick. This includes people 65 years and older, people of any age with certain chronic medical conditions (such as diabetes, asthma or heart disease), pregnant women and young children.
The Johnson County Department of Health and Environment (JCDHE) now offers the Flublok® Quadrivalent vaccine which contains three times more active ingredients than all other quadrivalent influenza vaccines, making it a good choice for older adults and those with compromised immune systems. In addition to Flublok®, health department clients can request the regular seasonal flu shot for anyone over the age of 6 months or the Fluzone® High-Dose vaccine for adults over age 65. All of these flu vaccines are available at JCDHE’s two walk-in immunizations clinics in Mission (6000 Lamar Ave.) and Olathe (11875 S. Sunset Drive). Flu vaccine is covered by Medicare and most health insurance plans with no copay. Those without insurance will pay $30 for the seasonal flu shot or the Flublok® vaccine and $50 for the Fluzone® High-Dose vaccine. JCDHE accepts private insurance from Blue Cross Blue Shield, Coventry, Cigna and United Healthcare and Medicare Part B. They do not take insurance from Coventry Advantra or Humana Gold Plus. JCDHE is a KanCare provider for all managed care organizations such as Amerigroup, Sunflower and United Community.
For more information about flu vaccines and JCDHE’s clinic hours or locations, visit the department’s webpage or call 913-826-1261.