Department of Health Osceola to host free flu shot event Saturday, Nov. 23

Florida Department of Health in Osceola County (FDOH-Osceola) is hosting a free flu shot event, Saturday, Nov. 23, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 1875 Fortune Road, Kissimmee.

Curbside service will be available for those with disabilities or special needs. Call 407-343-2000 for more information.

FDOH-Osceola is urging residents and visitors to get their flu vaccination now if they have not already. There are still weeks of flu activity to come, health officials said.

It is not too late to get vaccinated. The flu vaccine is safe, and recommended for everyone six months and older, including pregnant women, health department officials said.

If you become ill with flu-like symptoms, contact your health care provider as soon as possible. Stay home from work and keep children home from school or daycare when sick to help prevent spreading the flu to others.

It is also essential to practice good hygiene by properly and frequently washing your hands. Make it a habit to clean and disinfect commonly used surfaces in your home, school or office. You can take additional steps to ward off the flu by coughing or sneezing into a tissue or your elbow and avoiding touching your face.

For more information about the Florida Department of Health, visit www.FloridaHealth.gov.

Flu facts and figures from the Center for Disease Control and prevention

•Flu symptoms

Influenza (flu) can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Flu is different from a cold.

 Flu usually comes on suddenly. People who have flu often feel some or all of these symptoms: fever or feeling feverish/chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose,  muscle or body aches,  headaches fatigue (tiredness). Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.

It’s important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever.

•How flu spreads

Most experts believe that flu viruses spread mainly by tiny droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby. Less often, a person might get flu by touching a surface or object that has flu virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose or possibly their eyes.

•How many people get sick with flu every year?

A 2018 CDC study published in Clinical Infectious Diseasesexternal icon looked at the percentage of the U.S. population who were sickened by flu using two different methods and compared the findings.

Both methods had similar findings, which suggested that on average, about 8 percent of the U.S. population gets sick from flu each season, with a range of between 3 percent and 11 percent, depending on the season.