In an effort to cut down on the prevalence of the viruses, IU Health La Porte VNA Services is offering discounted flu vaccinations to protect against seasonal flu and pneumonia in La Porte and Starke counties.
The vaccinations are available to anyone interested over the age of 9, with no appointment necessary. The vaccines are available at two walk-in clinics: 901 S. Woodland Ave. in Michigan City, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. CT, and at 6955 E. 600 N. in Hamlet, Tuesday and Thursday, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. CT.
The VNA is also offering high-dose vaccinations for those older than 65, as well as intradermal vaccinations for those between the ages of 18 to 64.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, a yearly flu vaccine is the first and most important step in protecting against flu viruses. Children younger than six months are at high risk of serious illness but are too young for the vaccine, so the CDC recommends caretakers be vaccinated instead.
While influenza can occur at any time, most cases tend to occur from October through May. The flu vaccine protects against the three strains that research suggests will be most common during this flu season, but does not protect against the variant influenza A, which affected more than 130 people throughout Indiana in late summer. This strain was first seen in July of last year, and consequently, a vaccine is not yet available.
The seasonal influenza vaccine costs $25; pneumonia vaccination costs $70. In order to offer this service at a discount, IU Health La Porte VNA Services is only able to accept cash, check, or Medicare. They will not bill private insurance; patients are responsible for full payment.
For more information, call IU Health La Porte VNA Services at (800) 822-5378.