Be Patriotic, Get Your Flu Shot
Mayor and Health Commissioner get their immunization, encourage others to do the same.
The United States will soon have another challenge to deal with in its fight against COVID-19, the seasonal flu.
Flu vaccination shots, which offer protection against up to four common strains of the virus, are now available or scheduled to be available at many clinics across the country. Mayor Tom Barrett is encouraging Milwaukeeans to get the vaccine, and said Thursday morning its patriotic to do so and supports the country’s “war” against not only the flu, but COVID-19.
“This year it has a very, very, much-added importance,” Barrett said, noting it was possible to contract both the flu and COVID-19 at the same time. Both viruses attack the lungs. “We want to make sure we are doing anything we can to keep people out of the hospital.”
He called on his “general,” Health Commissioner Jeanette Kowalik, to provide further guidance on the vaccine’s importance.
“As a public health professional, a mom and someone with multiple chronic illnesses, I want to stress the importance of getting the vaccine,” Kowalik said. “We want to again stress prevention as our best measure.”
Kowalik, who previously served as the immunization manager for the health department, said the vaccine coupled with mask usage could save lives by reducing the spread of both the flu and coronavirus. “I definitely would recommend getting a vaccine and wearing a mask,” she said.
She encouraged people not to wait to get the flu shot.
“Often time when someone gets a new job or promotion, they do shots together,” said Barrett with a laugh. The two both got flu shots on camera after speaking.
A number of health care providers have begun offering the shot, and individuals are encouraged to contact theirs for more information. Organizations, including Neighborhood House, also are offering the immunization. Kowalik said the Milwaukee Health Department would begin offering the immunization for free at its clinics on October 5th. Additional details will be posted on the health department website or are available by calling 414-286-8034.
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