CARTERET COUNTY, NC (October 2, 2023) – As the influenza (flu) season kicks off, the Carteret County Health Department (CCHD) is emphasizing the importance of flu prevention. To reduce the spread of the flu virus, CCHD has launched its seasonal flu vaccine appointment system, open to eligible community members at the CCHD clinic. CCHD strongly urges individuals to proactively schedule a flu vaccination appointment to protect themselves against the flu virus.
Vaccine clinics are scheduled from Monday to Thursday, with sessions running from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. On Fridays, clinics will be open from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. They will be held at the CCHD clinic located at 3820-A Bridges St., Morehead City. Appointments are required for the flu vaccine clinic.
“October is the best time to get the flu vaccine for most people,” said Carteret County Public Health Director Nina Oliver. “Getting the flu vaccine in October gives the body time to build up an immunity before the holidays.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the flu vaccine for most people aged 6 months and older and states that getting the vaccine is the best way to avoid getting sick.
“It’s important to take preventative measures to protect yourself and your loved ones ahead of holiday gatherings,” said Kim Davis, Carteret County Director of Nursing. “First and foremost, get your flu shots and make sure you are up-to-date on all recommended routine vaccinations. Help reduce the spread of respiratory viruses by washing your hands often, covering your mouth when sneezing or coughing, disinfecting commonly touched surfaces, avoiding touching your face, and staying home when you’re sick.”
Flu vaccines can be obtained by individuals aged 6 months and older, while a high-dose flu vaccine is accessible for those aged 65 and over. The flu vaccine is priced at $33 and is typically covered by the majority of insurance plans. Children under the age of 18 who are not insured will incur no charge for the vaccine.
Residents are reminded that flu vaccinations can also be obtained at numerous nearby pharmacies and through their healthcare providers. To schedule a flu vaccine appointment, residents may call (252) 728-8550 and select option 3 during regular business hours.
Influenza, COVID-19 and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) symptoms are very similar and can be difficult to distinguish. If you are experiencing flu-like symptoms, the CDC recommends taking a COVID-19 test and contacting your health care provider.
Testing is also available at your local urgent care and pharmacy. Free COVID-19 test kits are available at https://www.covid.gov/tests. Residents may also call the Carteret County Health Department for free COVID-19 tests for pick up.
To learn more about influenza, visit the Carteret County Health Department website at http://carteretcountync.gov/1148/2023-2024-FLU or call (252) 728-8550.