Knox Health Dept. Receives More Flu Vaccine

By: Jessa Goddard
By: Jessa Goddard

Knoxville (WVLT) - The Knox County Health Department's flu shot shortage is over.

Thursday, the department received a shipment of nearly five thousand shots.

This should do it, this final shipment should be enough to vaccinate any East Tennessee resident who wants a flu shot.

And it comes just in time to build immunity; the peak of the flu season in East Tennessee will begin at the end of next month.

Despite some minor shipping delays, there will be enough flu vaccine to go around this year.

Christmas came early to the Knox County Health Department this morning, when it received a shipment of 45 to 48 hundred shots.

Public Health Officer Doctor Martha Buchanan says don't expect to wait in long lines for a shot this year.

"It's the phenomenon of it's available so I don't want it, I suppose, or I don't think I need it. If it's not available people seem to want it more, but our demand has just been very steady."

Still, public health officials recommend you get a shot, whether it's now or a month from now.

There's still no real indication what kind of flu season it will be, though neighboring states Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia as well as Florida are already reporting regional activity.

Tennessee's flu activity remains sporadic.

"Our most recent data for the state is that there's been one confirmed culture-positive case of the flu. Lots of people get diagnosed with a flu-like illness this time of year, which isn't the real flu," Dr. Buchanan says.

Though, the flu is not a reportable illness, so an exact number of cases is impossible to determine.

The flu can be difficult to diagnose, because its symptoms are similar to those of so many other viruses.

But your doctor can give you a rapid test that can detect whether you do, in fact, have the flu in about 30 minutes.

Though most people who have had the flu will tell you, you'll know it if you have it.


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