Posted: Thursday, September 13, 2012 --- 9:35p.m.
University Health Services (UHS) will again offer seasonal influenza immunizations (flu shots) for all registered students, faculty and staff. Just like last year, student flu shot clinics will be held at separate locations and dates from UW-employee clinics.
The first flu shot clinic for students will be held on Friday, Sept. 28, at the SERF, from noon to 5 pm. Students can drop in without an appointment and get their seasonal flu shot out of the way.
Free walk-in flu shots at UHS will begin Monday, Oct. 1, and will be available through Friday, Nov. 16. Additionally, walk-in flu shot clinics will be held at five other locations on campus though Nov. 6 (for students only). For more information, click here.
Employee flu shot clinics begin Sept. 17 at Union South and will be held at more than a dozen locations on and off campus (www.uhs.wisc.edu/campus-health/uw-flu-shots.shtml) through Nov. 1. Employees should bring their insurance information to flu shot clinics.
"We encourage students, faculty, and staff to boost their health early this fall by taking advantage of our walk-in flu shot clinics," says Sarah Van Orman, UHS executive director. "Getting vaccinated is safe and the single best way to protect yourself and those around you during the flu season."
Although many often associate flu season with the winter months, it's unpredictable and can start up as early as October. It can take up to two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against the flu.
Van Orman reminds the campus community that even if they had the flu shot last year, they need to be vaccinated on an annual basis.
"The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends annual vaccinations for a couple of reasons. One, protection from the flu shot only lasts six to nine months and two, the vaccine is formulated each year to keep up with changing flu viruses," she says.
The seasonal flu shot contains vaccine against three strains of influenza that may circulate in the U.S. this year. Typical flu symptoms include fever, sore throat and/or dry cough, runny nose, headaches, body aches and extreme fatigue.
As an alternative to the injectable vaccine, FluMist, will also be available for students (only at UHS, not at satellite clinics), faculty and staff for a fee.
"The last thing anyone needs or wants during their busy semester is to miss classes or work due to the flu," says Van Orman. "There are many convenient opportunities to walk in for a free flu shot through Nov. 16. You'll help yourself and those around you have a flu-free season."
Student flu shots are free and given by UHS because they’re covered by the Student Health Fee. As in previous years, UW–Madison employees will receive their flu shots from Home Health United nursing staff through their health insurance program.