The Importance of Flu Shots - KALB-TV News Channel 5 & CBS 2

The Importance of Flu Shots

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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB News Channel 5) Medical experts say the time is now to get protected from the flu.

Research shows thousands of people in the United States die from the Influenza Virus each year.

"The flu is highly contagious. They usually will get a super imposed pneumonia often a staff pneumonia and most of the time it is the elderly who die," said Dr. David Holcombe.

The flu can pose a serious health risk to senior citizens.

"The flu or the pneumonia not only can hurt your body but it can put you in the hospital. These days if you don't have insurance you are in bad shape," said Charles Obanion.

Just last year, studies show more than 150 children died nationwide from the flu.

CenLa health experts say classrooms can become hot spots for the flu virus to spread.

"The biggest problem that we see is a lot of the school aged children and the flu is a contagious respiratory illness and you know you are in a class room with 30 kids and everybody is sneezing and grabbing everything in the class room, it just spreads like wildfire," said Tim Turnage.  

And parents can also play a vital role in helping prevent the virus from spreading.

"You are supposed to keep them home when they are running a fever or if they don't feel well. You have parents that seem like they just don't care," said Daniele McMickin.

CenLa residents we spoke are taking the advice from medical experts to heart and preparing for flu season early this year. 

"I always take the flu shot and the pneumonia every year. And now I got the whole thing done I do not have to do it anymore," said Charles Obanion.

"It is just better overall. It is healthy for the whole family. It is just, you know, your body can only take so much. To keep them constantly sick you have no time to build a healthy immune system and I want that for my children. I do not want them sick all the time," said Daniele McMickin.

For more information on how to prepare for the upcoming flu season visit www.Flu.gov.  Locally, Cenla Urgent Care offers flu shots. Your personal physician should be able to offer the shot or know someone who can in your area.

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