It’s flu season once again, and local health departments are meeting it head on with drive-through flu clinics.
The Carter County Health Department will hold the first flu clinic from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on October 12 at the Ardmore Fire Department on Rockford Road. The drive-through event will be limited to patients who are nine and older.
Lorraine Acevedo, local emergency response coordinator for Carter, Love, Jefferson, Johnston, Stephens, Pontotoc and Marshall Counties, said The Chickasaw Nation has provided the department with 5,000 doses of flu vaccine.
“We just want to give flu shots to everyone to prevent any type of spread of this disease because last year was so bad,” Acevedo said.
Pontotoc County was recently added to Acevedo’s jurisdiction. She said each county will have its own drive-through clinic, and nurses plan to visit schools and businesses to
vaccinate people on site. All health department locations currently have vaccines available at no out-of-pocket cost.
“Last year we were a little spread out, we’re just concentrating our efforts into just one location in the counties so people don’t get confused,” Acevedo said.
Patients should wear long sleeves and shouldn’t have pets in the car when they come to the clinic.
“Oklahomans are animal lovers and a lot of people travel with their dogs,” Acevedo said. “Usually we just ask them to park and get down from the vehicle so our nurses can give them a flu shot.”
Flu clinics are tentatively scheduled for October 12 in Ardmore, October 16 in Waurika, October 17 in Duncan, October 18 in Marietta, October 24 in Madill and October 26 in Tishomingo. Madill’s event may not be a drive-through. More will likely be added as time goes on. Acevedo said flyers for each event will be posted to each health department location’s Facebook page.
Last year’s flu season was one of the worst on record, with 173 Oklahomans dying of the disease.