Don’t fear the flu shot

When the year transitions into fall and winter, people get flu shots so they don’t get sick.

Students can get flu shots at the Wyoming Department of Health and local pharmacies. Laramie County Community College is not offering flu shots due to budget cuts and lack of donations.

“Prices have not changed since last year, it may vary by pharmacy,”Kaitlin Mackenna, nurse for the LCCC Health Clinic, said.

The prices for flu shots can vary for different pharmacies. At Walgreens the price is $31.99, $39.99 and $59.99 for different ages without insurance. Walmart has two prices; $39.84 for a four-strain and $69.84 for the Fluzone High Dose. There is a $0 co-pay for those with insurance.

Currently, there is no information yet for how many flu shots were used in Cheyenne.

One common misconception about the flu shot is that it can give people the flu.

“There is no live flu virus in flu shots. They cannot cause the flu. There are many flu viruses, and they are always changing,” The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

“People get sick because of their bodies are being protected by dead virus cells and the immune system is fighting against the foreign viruses from outside,” Mackenna said.

Flu shots can vary by type and use. The Standard-dose trivalent shots are applied to the muscle by a needle. For people wanting alternatives, there are jet injections. With jet injections, your skin gets a spray with the vaccine instead of being punctured. However, for people wanting the nasal spray, it is not recommended this season.

The protection may occur after 2 weeks after vaccination and may last the flu season.

Pregnant women, children 6 months or younger, people 65 and older and people who have low immune systems or allergies within the ingredients inside the shot cannot get the flu shot. They can get different versions of shots. Like people ages 64 or younger cannot have high doses (Fluzone High-Dose) of the flu shot, these are specifically used for older citizens with weakening immune systems. Adults 65 or older and children 18 or younger cannot use intradermal flu vaccine, a shot that is applied to the skin with a small needle.

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