With influenza widespread and on the rise nationally and in Connecticut, the Connecticut State Department of Health is trying to combat it from spreading by offering statewide clinics for free flu shots.
Shortly after officials said 11 more flu deaths were reported in Connecticut without even being half way through flu season, the Department of Public Health (DPH) announced multiple flu clinics with access to free flu shots would be made available for those who have yet to receive their vaccination.
Channel 3 spoke with Bob Twomby who said he has been meaning to get the flu shot for weeks, so he decided Saturday would be the day, especially after concerns of the spread of the flu.
“Very scary. What’s going on. Very,” said Twomby. “It really is 32 deaths so far this year in Connecticut, so yeah, it’s scary.”
Each one of Connecticut’s eight counties have reports of the flu, with more than 1,900 cases reported, almost half of which required hospitalization.
Health experts are encouraged people who have yet to get a flu shot that it is not too late.
“Flu season has not yet peaked, so we still have time,” said representative for the Middletown Health Department, Lou Carta. “People are encouraged if you haven’t gotten your flu shot, it is not too late.”
People of all ages are encouraged to get a flu shot, too, even 7-year-old Draya Gohagon who said without the help of her teddy bear, she would have been scared.
“I didn’t really feel it, but it was really scary,” said Draya.
Draya’s mom told Channel 3 that she knows all too well how serious the flu can be.
“I actually just got over the flu,” said Michelle Gohagon. “So, we were avoiding it because of the fear of needles, but after experiencing the flu myself, I wanted to make sure that she was protected.”
While health experts encourage getting a flu shot, they said it’s important to remember those things you learned in kindergarten, like hand washing, avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth to prevent the virus from entering.