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VA offers walk-in seasonal flu vaccination clinics

KWKT
POSTED: Thursday, October 3, 2013 - 8:36am
UPDATED: Thursday, October 3, 2013 - 9:27pm

Every Thursday and Friday from October 3 through November 1, 2013, veterans can get their seasonal flu vaccination at the walk-in flu vaccination clinic at the Central Texas Veterans Health Care System (CTVHCS) facility in Temple or by requesting it at any upcoming scheduled visit with their primary care physician. The vaccination is free for all Veterans enrolled in the health care system.

CTVHCS launched its 2013-2014 seasonal flu vaccination campaign earlier in this month at all of its facilities in Central Texas. This year’s flu campaign theme is “Hit Me with The Flu Shot.”

“I encourage all of our Veterans to get their flu shot at one of our eight facilities in Central Texas,” said Sallie A. Houser-Hanfelder, FACHE, Director of the Central Texas Veterans Health Care System. “Flu shots are an easy way to help prevent the spread of the flu, and we’ve made it even easier to get by hosting a drive-through clinic at our Temple Campus on October 29 and 30 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Valet Parking area.”
 

Walk-In Clinics schedules:
• Temple: Walk-in clinics at the Olin E. Teague Veterans’ Medical Center will be located in the waiting area for the Laboratory check in/Travel Pay in the Teague Tower (Building 163) from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and from 1 to 3:30 p.m. every Thursday and Friday starting October 3 and running through November 1.
Address: 1901 Veterans Memorial Drive in Temple.
• Waco: Walk-in clinics at the Waco VA Medical Center will located in the outpatient clinic in Room BA165 in the basement of Building 4 from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and from 1 to 3:30 p.m. The Waco walk-in clinics begin October 15, 2013, and run through November 1, 2013. Address: 4800 Memorial Drive in Waco.
• The Austin Outpatient Clinic, the LaGrange VA Outreach Clinic, and the Community Based Outpatient Clinics located in Brownwood, College Station, Cedar Park, and Palestine will offer flu shots for Veterans with scheduled appointments or as a walk-in to their Patient Aligned Care Team during regular operating hours Monday-Friday.
Drive-Through Clinic schedule:
• Temple only: October 29 and 30, 2013, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Valet Parking area outside of the Teague Hospital (Building 204).
 

This year’s vaccination will protect against the strains Influenza A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)-like; Influenza A/Victoria/361/2011 (H3N2); Influenza B/Massachusetts/2/2012-like.
 

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at high risk for serious flu complications. The best way to prevent the flu is by getting vaccinated each year.
 

The seasonal flu vaccine will be available through March 31, 2014, from the Primary Care Clinics. Veterans are encouraged to call the Flu Vaccination Hotline at 1-866-613-1482 to report receiving the flu vaccine elsewhere or to receive the most recent flu vaccine information from Central Texas Veterans Health Care System. For contact numbers to other Central Texas facilities, visit the website: http://www.centraltexas.va.gov/.
 

In order to stay healthy and enjoy all of the games this season, the CTVHCS Infection Prevention and Control staff share these reminders:
1. Get an influenza vaccination every year.

2.  Practice good hand hygiene by rubbing hands for a minimum of 15-20 seconds with antimicrobial hand foam or soap and water.

3. If you are sick, stay home:
• Cough is common this time of year. In addition to flu, pertussis cases have been on the rise. See your healthcare provider if you have a cough that lasts greater than two weeks. Other signs of pertussis include: fever; runny nose, and vomiting after heavy coughing.
• A measles outbreak has also occurred in Texas this year; if you have a rash that is accompanied by a fever and cough, please see your healthcare provider.
4. Don’t carry a “cold in your pocket” - dispose of tissues after use.
5. Don’t touch your eyes, nose, or mouth -- the flu virus can spread through contact with contaminated surfaces.
6. Coughs and sneezes spread diseases, so practice good respiratory etiquette by covering your coughs and sneezes, and don’t forget to use good hand hygiene afterwards.

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