Middlesex County Health Office Encourages Residents To Get Flu Shots

MIDDLESEX COUNTY — The Middlesex County Office of Health Services would like to remind residents that it is not too late to receive a flu shot.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) latest reports, influenza activity has increased in the United States. New Jersey is experiencing high levels of influenza-like-illness (ILI).

Flu shots are available at the county’s Public Health Clinic located at 596 Jersey Avenue, Suite B, New Brunswick, on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1-3 p.m.

Cost of the vaccine is $15, which will be accepted in “cash only” and exact change is strongly recommended. No bill larger than $20 will be accepted. Residents who present a valid Red, White and Blue Medicare card will not be charged, and their Medicare will be billed.

Middlesex County Freeholder Director Christopher D. Rafano said, “The Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders, through the Office of Health Services, is committed to meeting the health needs of our residents and is happy to be able to continue to offer influenza vaccinations. The best way to protect yourself, your family, and your co-workers is to get a flu shot each year.”

“We are just coming into the height of flu season, so there is still time for all those who want to get a vaccine to do so,” said Freeholder H. James Polos, chair of the County’s Public Safety and Health Committee. “Residents can take advantage of our weekly clinic to do this.”

The CDC continues to recommend influenza vaccination for people who have not yet been vaccinated this season. A flu shot is especially important for certain groups of individuals who are at higher risk of developing serious flu-related complications. These groups include: pregnant women, children under the age of five, and especially, those younger than 2 years old, people 65 years of age and older, and people with certain chronic medical conditions (such as asthma, heart disease, cancer, diabetes and HIV).

Other people for whom vaccination is important include those who live in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities, and people who live with or care for those at high risk for complications from the flu. Health care workers are recommended to receive the flu vaccine to reduce the transmission of influenza-related illness and death, especially to patients at increased risk for severe flu complications.

Lester Jones, Middlesex County Office of Health Services Director-Health Officer said, “Everyone six months and older should get a flu vaccination each year, but good health habits can also help protect against the flu.”

You can also help reduce the spread of flu if you:

  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Clean your hands often. (Keep alcohol-based hand sanitizers in your purse, car, and backpack, when soap and water is not available.)
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth as much as possible.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, and then throw away your used tissue.
  • Get regular exercise, enough rest, and eat healthy, balanced meals.

For additional information please call the Middlesex County Office of Health Services at 1-732-745-3100 or visit our website at http://co.middlesex.nj.us/publichealth/flu-clinics.asp.

You can also search for additional flu clinics in your area by calling 211 or by visiting the New Jersey Department of Health’s Find a Flu Shot website at: http://www.state.nj.us/health/flu/findflushot.shtml.

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