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By Hartsville Vidette Staff Reporter

Flu season is here in full force, with seasonal influenza cases now reported across Tennessee and even some school systems closing because of illness.

The Trousdale County Health Department is working to protect the entire community by providing free flu vaccinations to area residents on a first-come, first-served basis.

A small amount of vaccines is still available, and to ensure they can be used to protect health will be provided at no charge to patients until supplies are depleted. Appointments must be made to receive flu vaccines, and are now being scheduled at the clinic on East Main Street.

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“Anyone, even healthy people, can get the flu and serious problems related to the flu can happen at any age. Vaccination is the best protection against the flu, and it’s very important to get vaccinated. We recommend that everyone six months of age and older get a flu vaccine,” said Brittany Tate, Public Health County Director. “It can still protect you, especially those who are more susceptible to illness, such as the elderly and infants. We also encourage pregnant women to get vaccinated.

“There are different strains of the flu, but you can still be protected with a vaccine.”

The flu vaccine is especially important for people at high risk for serious illness or death from influenza such as the elderly, pregnant women and young children, as well as healthcare workers and family and friends of anyone at high risk. Expectant mothers should be vaccinated during pregnancy to protect themselves and pass protection on to their unborn babies.

Flu shots will be provided at no charge to patients. Both adults and children may receive flu vaccines at the clinic. Please call the Trousdale County Health Department at 615-374-2112 to book your appointment. The clinic is located at 541 East Main Street, and open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.