September means back to school, football, and foliage. But it also means time for your annual flu shot. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises that yearly flu vaccination should begin in September or as soon as vaccine is available, and continue throughout the flu season which can begin as early as October and last as late as May.
It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against influenza virus infection, “the flu”. In the meantime, you are still at risk for getting the flu. That’s why it’s better to get vaccinated early in the fall, before the flu season really gets under way.
Flu shots are available in a variety of locations including your physician’s office, community health centers, some pharmacies and grocery stores, and community-sponsored flu clinics. For more information about the flu visit mass.gov/flu. In the meantime, see how one community health center educates patients about the flu:
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