Stop Flu at School Vaccination Clinics Start Today
The Hawaiʻi State Department of Health’s annual Stop Flu at School program begins today, and will continue in more than 167 public schools statewide through Dec. 21, 2017. The voluntary program administers free flu shots to Hawaiʻi students in kindergarten through eighth grade who are enrolled at participating schools. Approximately 35,000 students are expected to be vaccinated during the seven-week program.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends an annual flu vaccination for everyone six months and older. Department officials say, each year, flu causes millions of illnesses, hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations, and thousands of deaths in the United States.
“Vaccination is our best defense against the flu,” said Dr. Sarah Park, state epidemiologist. “Since flu can cause severe illness in people of all ages, we encourage everyone to talk to their doctor to learn more and get vaccinated.”
For those unable to be vaccinated through the Stop Flu at School program, flu vaccine is available through healthcare provider offices, clinics, and pharmacies. For a list of vaccinating pharmacies statewide, visit the DOH Vaccine Locator online.
In addition to vaccination for everyone six months of age and older, DOH recommends other flu prevention strategies, which include staying home when sick, covering coughs and sneezes, and washing hands frequently.
For more information about the Stop Flu at School program is available online or via the Aloha United Way information and referral line at 2-1-1.