Flu season underway in Boone County

Monday, December 2, 2013 | 6:07 p.m. CST; updated 11:12 p.m. CST, Monday, December 2, 2013

COLUMBIA — With 10 reported cases, the flu season has officially begun in Boone County.

Andrea Waner, a spokeswoman for the Health Department said that this flu season as of Nov. 23 has been average so far.

How to get flu vaccination

The clinic is located is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at 1005 W. Worley St. The vaccination is $25 for adults and free for children under 18 years old.

"It seems to be pretty typical," she said.

Data are collected at the end of every week, and last week's numbers are not yet available, Waner said.

Waner doesn't know what to expect as the most severe months of January and February approach, calling the flu season "predictably unpredictable." But she hopes the increased number of vaccinations given to children this year will prove effective.

"We vaccinated more kids this year than we have in any other year since 2011," when the program began, Waner said.

A total of 7,561 children, or 41 percent of elementary and middle school students in Boone County, received free flu vaccinations from school-based flu clinics this year, up from 4,638 in 2011.

The children who didn't take advantage of the program can go to a clinic at 1005 W. Worley St. and get the vaccine for free. The vaccine is also offered to adults for $25.

"It's never too late," Waner said.

Because the vaccination can take up to two weeks to be fully effective, Waner recommended acting quickly.

Supervising editor is Richard Webner.

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