Flu season is coming early in parts of the United States: This time last year, flu cases were lower in the St. Louis area than they are now, according to data on Google's Flu Trends.
Overall in Missouri, activity is considered high now, while it was considered low at this time in 2011, according to Flu Trends.
If you're considering getting a flu shot, here are some places in or around St. Charles that offer the vaccine:
- St. Charles County Health Department: St.Charles County Division of Public Health is offering intradermal flu vaccine for $25 to adults aged 18-64. Vaccinations at the health department facility (located at 1650 Boone's Lick Road in St.Charles) are offered every weekday except Thursday. Hours are 8:30 to 11 a.m. and 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. — open until 5:30 p.m. on Tuesdays. In addition, hours are extended until 7 p.m., on the second Tuesday of each month.
- Schnucks: The grocery store pharmacy offers flu shots for $27.99 and for no copay for people with Medicare Part B coverage. Preservative free flu shots are $29.99. Head here to schedule an appointment online.
- CVS: The CVS located in Harvester offers walk-in flu shots from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday for adults and children 18 months and older. Insurance is accepted including Medicare Part B. Learn more here.
- Walgreens: Walgreens clinics serve both walk-in clients and set appointments for flu shots between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m., noon to 1 p.m and 5 to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., noon to 1 p.m. and 5 to 6 p.m. Sundays. Walgreens offers the flu shot for people ages 6 months and older, the high dose flu shot for people ages 65 and older. Schedule an appointment online here.
According to this week's CDC Flu activity report, influenza levels are on the increase across the country.
Five states – Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee – are reporting flu rates not normally seen until January, according to the Centers for Disease Control. The flu season normally peaks in January and February.
Holiday travel and more time spent indoors due to soggy weather will contribute to the spread of the flu virus, so now is the time to get vaccinated.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers the following information: