Monday, October 11, 2010

Free Flu Shots for Area Seniors

UPMC St. Margaret, near Aspinwall, is offering free flu vaccinations to area residents age 65 and older on Saturday, Oct. 30, from 9 a.m. to noon at Entrance B of the hospital.

Priority will be given to seniors or those with chronic health conditions. Individuals 18 to 64 years of age who do not have a chronic health condition can be vaccinated for $15. Children under the age of 18 will not be vaccinated at this event. Those with questions and concerns about the flu shot should consult a family physician for advice.

The Centers for Disease Control recommend that the following people be among the first to get vaccinated each year: people 65 years of age and older people of any age who have had a heart attack, have heart disease, have a lung disease such as asthma, emphysema, or chronic bronchitis; have diabetes, HIV, a blood disorder, kidney disease, or a weakened immune system; people who are morbidly obese (Body Mass Index, or BMI, of 40 or greater); pregnant women people who live in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities; people who have health problems that make it difficult to breathe or swallow; and people who live with or care for those at high risk for complications from flu, including: health-care workers; household contacts of persons at high risk for complications from the flu; household contacts and out of home; and caregivers of children less than 6 months of age (these children are too young to be vaccinated).

Those who are allergic to eggs or chicken, or who have had an allergic reaction to a flu shot in the past, should consult their physician before receiving the vaccination. No appointment is necessary; parking tickets will be validated. Vaccines were donated by the St. Margaret Foundation. For more information, call 412-784-5185.

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