October 1 marks the beginning of flu season, and area hospitals are offering free flu shots to offer immunity to four strains of influenza virus predicted to be prevalent, based on activity in the southern hemisphere. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends flu shots for persons ages 6 months and older with any licensed influenza vaccine that is appropriate for the person’s age and health status. The Department of Health and Senior Services is encouraging individuals to get their flu shot by the end of October, as it can take two weeks to be protected against the flu.
“While it is extremely important for every Missourian to get their flu shot, it is especially important that those in high-risk groups receive their vaccination,” said Dr. Randall Williams, DHSS director. “And while we were encouraged last year by lower incidence rates of flu in Missouri, we cannot let down our guard and skip flu shots, or we may see increased rates of incidence and flu-related deaths in the state.”
Persons considered at high-risk are adults age 65 years and older, pregnant women, young children, children with neurologic conditions, and individuals with asthma, heart disease or stroke, diabetes, HIV/AIDS and/or cancer.
Here are times and locations for upcoming free flu shot clinics.
Monday, Oct. 7 – Wednesday, Oct. 9, from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., for adults ages 18 and older at the Barnes-Jewish Plaza Tower, main floor lobby 1 Barnes Jewish Plaza St. Louis, MO 63110 Parking is available in the Plaza Garage for $2/hr.
Monday, Oct. 7 – Wednesday, Oct. 9, pediatric (6 months and older) and adult vaccinations at the Center for Advanced Medicine, 3rd floor lobby, 4921 Parkview Place, St. Louis, Mo. 63110. Parking is available in the Euclid Garage for $2/hr.
Christian Hospital is offering free flu shots for children aged 3 years and older and for adults.
Tuesday, Oct. 1, from 3 p.m.-7 p.m. at the Christian Hospital Detrick Atrium, 11133 Dunn Rd. 63136
Saturday, Oct. 12, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at the Shalom Health Fair at Hazelwood East High School, 11300 Dunn Rd. 63138
Sunday Oct. 13, from 9 a.m.–2 p.m. at the Christian Hospital Detrick Atrium, 11133 Dunn Rd. 63136
Tuesday, Oct. 15, from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. at the Ferguson Empowerment Center, 9420 W. Florissant Rd. 63136
Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish West County
Saturday, Oct. 12, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Siteman Center at Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital Medical Office Building 2, 10 Barnes West Drive, Creve Coeur, Mo. 63141.
Siteman Cancer Center – South County
Saturday, Oct. 19, from 9 a.m.-2 p.m., pediatric (6 months and older) and adult vaccinations at Siteman Cancer Center-South County, 5225 Midamerica Plaza, St. Louis, Mo. 63129.
BJH says for safety reasons, flu shots at are not available to individuals who have had a previous allergic reaction to the flu vaccine, those with egg allergies or anyone who has ever had Guillain-Barré Syndrome.
SSM Health flu clinics Sat. Oct. 12
From 8 a.m. until 12 noon on Saturday, October 12, SSM Health is offering free flu shots in the St. Louis area for persons ages 9 and older. SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital will vaccinate children ages 6 months and older.
Vaccinations at SSM flu clinics are available by injection only and there will not be a preservative-free option. Pregnant women are advised to obtain a flu shot from their primary care physician. No appointments are necessary. Participants should wear loose-fit clothing. Flu shots will be given on a first-come, first-served basis and are available while supplies last at the following locations.
SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital – at the drive-thru parking lot next to Ronald McDonald House, 3450 Park Avenue, Saint Louis, Mo. 63104
SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital – at the drive-thru Bellevue Ave. (one block south of Clayton Rd.), Richmond Heights, Mo. 63117
SSM Health St. Clare Hospital-Fenton – at the Conference Center, 1015 Bowles Avenue, Fenton, Mo. 63026
SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital-Lake St. Louis – at the Education Center - Koenig Building, 400 Medical Plaza, Lake St. Louis, Mo. 63367
SSM Health DePaul Hospital – at the May Center, 12303 DePaul Drive, Saint Louis, Mo. 63044
SSM Health Outpatient Center – at the Lewis and Clark Conference Room, 711 Veterans Memorial Parkway, St. Charles, Mo. 63303
Persons with egg allergies should check with their doctor about FDA approved flu vaccines that do not contain egg protein. For anyone who had a severe reaction to a previous flu vaccine, the flu shot is not recommended.