When Can I Get a Flu Shot?

By: Jessa Goddard, Medical Reporter
By: Jessa Goddard, Medical Reporter

Knoxville (WVLT) - It may still feel like summer, but fall is here and so is flu season, it officially started Sunday.

So, your next question is likely, when can I get a flu shot?

The long lines, the rationing, the waiting, just thinking about flu season is enough to give you a headache that rivals the virus itself.

But before you take two Tylenol, the CDC says the flu shot supply has received a shot in the arm.

CDC officials say a record amount of flu vaccine will be available this year.

"We're already beginning to receive our supply of vaccine, and we'll begin vaccinating October 16th at the Knox County Health Department," says John Lott, Knox County Director of Nursing.

Two weeks from Monday, Knox County plans to begin administering flu vaccine to anyone who wants one.

In the past few years, shortages caused health officials to ask healthy adults to hold off on shots and allow high-risk people to get them first.

"Currently, there are no restrictions on who receives the vaccination. Typically, that only occurs when there is a decrease in the availability of the vaccine," explains Lott.

While health officials recommend everyone get a flu shot, they urge people at high-risk to.

Those groups include people over 65, adults and children with chronic diseases, pregnant women and health care workers.

Knox County residents can receive a shot from the health department for 15 dollars for adults and free for children, beginning October 16th.

But cases of the flu can begin to appear now.

"CDC will start monitoring the seasonal influenza activity, with reports weekly starting probably around October 14th," Lott says.

The CDC estimates 100 million doses of vaccine will be available this season, three-fourths of them by the end of the month.


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