The Brunswick County Health Department is handing out hand sanitizer and masks to those who come in for a flu shot.
BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WECT) - Officials at the Brunswick County Health Department say their supplies are running low.
Flu shot season started back in August, according to officials. They had more than 6,000 flu vaccines at that time, but as we head into 2013 the number of flu shots available is shrinking.
Health experts say this year they are seeing a more severe type of flu compared to past years.
Officials say contracting the flu is more than an inconvenience of missing work or school. It can also lead to severe complications and even death.
The US averages about 36,000 deaths caused by the flu. In NC, about 2,000 people die every year.
"The single best way to prevent getting the flu is to get a flu shot," said David Stanley, Health Services Director, "but practicing good health habits is also important."
The health department is currently handing out masks and sanitizers to those who come through the department.
If you do not get a shot, these recommendations may help prevent you from getting sick or spreading the germs:
Wash your hands often,
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth,
Avoid close contact with people who are sick,
Cover your cough,
Stay home when sick.
The Brunswick County Health Department has multiple types of the vaccine available, including "High Dose" for people over the age of 65. They say this is a vaccine that contains four times the antigen of the standard dose and improves the antibody production in older patients.
The Brunswick County Health Department also offers a pediatric vaccine, preservative free vaccine, flu mist and a standard vaccine.
All shots are administered by trained Public Health Nurses and a record of the shot is entered into the North Carolina Immunization Registry for future reference.
No appointment is necessary this year.
Shots are available on a walk-in basis Monday thru Friday from 9 am until 4 pm.
The health department accepts most types of insurance.