The #1 way to protect yourself and your family from the flu it to get vaccinated each year.
Flu is a very serious disease that strikes even healthy people. The single most effective protection for the flu is getting the flu vaccine. It is recommended that all people aged 6 months and older receive a flu vaccine every year.
The Chester County Health Department is partnering with VaxCare to bill most health insurance plans for clinics at the Health Department and community outreaches. If you have health insurance, bring your insurance card at the time of your appointment. Your health insurance coverage will be confirmed prior to receiving the vaccine. If you do not have health insurance, or if your health insurance does not cover the flu vaccine, it will be provided at no cost to you.
Unfortunately, the Health Department is unable to provide the flu vaccine to adults (age 19 and older) who participate in any of the PA Medical Assistance insurance plans. (PA Medical Assistance plans include Keystone First, United Healthcare Community Plan, Health Partners, Coventry Cares, and Aetna Better Health.) Please consult your primary care provider or a participating pharmacy for the vaccine. Flu vaccine is available at no charge to children if they have Medical Assistance insurance plans.
To find out what types of flu vaccine are available, or to schedule an appointment at the Health Department clinic by phone, call 610-344-6252.
You cannot get the flu from the flu vaccine. The viruses are killed or weakened so they cannot replicate.
The flu vaccine takes approximately two weeks to generate protective antibodies, so for the two weeks after receiving your vaccine, practice good health habits to avoid getting the flu.
Side effects from your vaccine are not actual flu infection but a response from your immune system to the flu germs in the vaccine. Side effects are an initial response from your immune system to the killed or weakened flu germs and are generally mild and resolve in 1-3 days. Taking pain relievers will not interfere with the vaccine and may be taken for comfort if necessary.
Each year, the flu vaccine protects against different flu viruses. A new immunization is required each year.
The single most effective protection for the flu is getting the flu vaccine.
Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it. If you don't have a tissue, sneeze or cough into your sleeve.
Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Avoid contact with sick people.
If you are sick, stay home for seven days after your symptoms begin or until you have been symptom-free for 24 hours, whichever is longer. This is to keep from infecting others and spreading the virus further.
Follow public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds and other social distancing measures.