Flu shots are the ‘best way’ to keep from getting sick. Here’s where to get yours

With the flu season approaching, the Stanislaus County Health Services Agency will offer vaccinations at community clinics in the next several weeks.

Flu shots are available Friday at the Riverbank Community Center from 10 a.m. to noon. The Riverbank center is at 3600 Santa Fe Ave.

A two-hour vaccination clinic was held Wednesday at the Modesto Gospel Mission, and additional clinics are planned for Modesto, Ceres and other communities.

The county vaccination clinics are generally for low-income residents. A $25 fee is charged to cover the county’s cost. According to a Health Services Agency press release, people who are unable to pay the fee can still get a flu shot.

“Getting the flu shot every year is the best way to avoid getting the flu, so take the time to get your flu shot,” said Dr. Julie Vaishampayan, county public health officer. “Everyone six months and older should get a flu shot each year.”

The vaccination is not recommended for those with a history of allergic reaction to the vaccine or any ingredient in the vaccine.

A health services flu shot clinic will be held from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Ceres Unified School District, at 2491 Lawrence St. Additional clinics at Ceres Unified School District, at the 2503 Lawrence St. location, are set for Nov. 21 and Dec. 5 from 4 to 6 p.m.

In Modesto, flu shots will be available at the Salvation Army, 320 Ninth St., from 4 to 6 p.m. Oct. 30.

The agency is making arrangements for additional clinics.

The Stanislaus County immunization clinic, at 820 Scenic Drive in Modesto,, accepts walk-ins from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays and noon to 6 p.m. Thursdays. Otherwise, vaccination services by appointment are available at the clinic Wednesdays and Fridays. Call 558-7700.

Kaiser Permanente provides flu shots to its members at no charge. Kaiser has three walk-in vaccination clinics in Modesto, Monday through Friday, at the medical center at 4601 Dale Road (rear west entrance); the medical offices at 3800 Dale Road (second floor Adult and Family Medicine); and medical offices at 4125 Bangs Ave. (conference room). The hours are 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

“Influenza is a serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death, even in healthy young people,” said Dr. Piero Garzaro, an infectious disease specialist for Kaiser in the Central Valley. “A flu vaccine is the best way to reduce your risk of getting sick with flu and spreading it to others including your loved ones.”

Sutter Gould Medical Foundation has flu shots by appointment for its patients and the public. Insurance may cover the cost. If not, Sutter Gould charges $40. Seniors can ask about a high dose vaccination for $50. To schedule an appointment, Sutter Gould patients should call their physician’s office; others may call (209) 550-4702.

Ken Carlson: 209-578-2321, @KenCarlson16