GREAT FALLS- In 2018, the cascade county health department reported 113 influenza hospitalizations. Now, health officials have gotten a head start in lowering those numbers in a way they've never tried before.
Alluvion Health said they're having a Downtown Day this year, meaning they'll go from business to business seeing if people need a flu shot.
Trixie Smith, the Prevention Services Manager for Alluvion Health said this is a fast and convenient way for parents to get their flu shots done, and out of the way.
"We'll just walk into the business; see if they're interested in receiving their flu shot,” said Smith, "We will bill their insurance, we will accept cash or other types of payments, and we'll give them their flu shot and then we'll leave and go to the next door.”
The only thing this will cost you is $30 for the shot. Alluvion Health said they don't have a date picked out for the Downtown Day yet.
If they can't get to your business on Downtown Day, people can call and ask for them to come since they're offering on-site flu shot clinics at any business in town.
Health officials said every flu season is different and can be unpredictable which is why they're urging people to get their flu shot done right away in late September or early October.
Health officials said it takes about two weeks after you get a flu shot to be protected from the flu. Flu season starts around the fall, but spikes more after the New Year, and lasts until about March.
"The important thing to remember is that when you get your flu shot, you are protecting those individuals around you,” said Smith.
Health officials said, the flu vaccine is recommended for people 6 month-year-olds and up. If someone is pregnant it's, important they get a flu shot. There's others thing people can do to prevent getting or spreading the flu- wash their hands, stay at home when sick, and cover their mouth when they cough.