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Health officials urge residents to get flu vaccinations

News-Topic - 11/16/2022

Nov. 14—LENOIR — Public health officials with the Caldwell County Health Department urge residents to get their flu shot soon, as flu season in the state typically peaks in the winter.

"It's been pretty prevalent," said Jeannie Walker, assistant health director. "I've heard that all urgent cares have been at capacity for the past couple of weeks, and we're seeing extra patients here, as well."

The Caldwell County Health Department administers flu vaccines every day. Walk-ins are welcome, or residents can also call 828-426-8400 to make an appointment.

This year's flu vaccine is the quadrivalent vaccine and is designed to protect against four flu viruses: two Influenza A and two influenza B viruses.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that getting vaccinated is the single best way for people to protect themselves against the flu and their loved ones.

According to the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS), North Carolina has seen a rapid early rise in flu cases in recent weeks after two years of relatively low flu activity since the COVID-19 pandemic began. As of Nov. 2, five adult deaths and one pediatric flu death have been reported.

On Wednesday, Oct. 26, the first adult flu death of the 2022-23 season was reported when an adult in the western part of the state died due to complications of influenza during the third week of October. The person's hometown, county, age, and gender were not released in order to protect the privacy of the family.

Later, on Wednesday, Nov. 2, NCDHHS announced the first pediatric death of the 2022-23 season, which was the first pediatric flu death since February 2020. Again, no background information was released.

To help prevent flu, health officials remind residents to wash your hands, cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze, avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth, get plenty of rest, drink water, stay home if you get sick, eat nutritious meals, and get the flu vaccine.

Signs and symptoms of the flu include fever, aches, chills, fatigue, cough, headaches, and an abrupt onset of some or all of these symptoms.

The Caldwell County Health Department accepts most insurances (Medicare part B card, current Medicaid card, or any other private insurance). Please provide a front and back copy of your insurance card at the time of service. Uninsured patients can receive a flu shot for $40 or a high dose (for those ages 65 and older) for $75. The health department accepts cash or check at the time of service.

Flu consent forms can be found online at


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