‘Influenza hits you quick:’ Health officials encourage Wisconsin residents to get flu shots early this season

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OAK CREEK -- Summer is winding down, and the fall season is upon us. With the start of the school year and change of the weather, the flu comes rolling in as well. It's a good idea to start protecting yourself now.

Lauren Misleh

With the coughs, sneezes and close contact, germs can spread easily and quickly. That's why Lauren Misleh, the pharmacy team leader at the Meijer store in Oak Creek, is urging everyone six months of age and older to get a flu shot.

"Flu season is in full swing," said Misleh. "No appointment necessary."

Staff at Meijer is making it easy to stay healthy, offering the vaccine that will help protect you throughout the entire flu season. However, the key is getting it sooner than later.

"The flu vaccine takes two full weeks to become effective," said Misleh. "We want to make sure you are getting it now."

Once the symptoms kick in, it's too late.

Flu shots

"Influenza hits you quick," said Misleh. "High fevers, body aches, cough, runny nose. It makes you feel miserable."

Though the flu can result in serious health complications like pneumonia, bacterial infections and hospitalization, it can sometimes lead to death. Last season, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services reporter four influenza-associated pediatric deaths in Wisconsin and 111 nationwide.

"In 2019, we did see it spread a lot longer than normal," said Misleh.

Flu shots

Flu shots

Now the only thing health officials want to spread is awareness and prevention.

"Hand washing is always very important," said Misleh. "If you don't have access to soap and water, carrying hand sanitizer is important.

As an added bonus, Meijer will donate 10 meals to a local food pantry for every flu shot given. The City of Milwaukee is also offering several clinics in the upcoming weeks. For a schedule, click HERE.

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