More than two hundred people line up to get their flu shots during weekend clinic

Public Health Dept. hosts Flu Clinic

BAKERSFIELD -  

Hundreds of people, concerned over the flu made their way to the Kern County Public Health Department, standing in long lines to get their vaccinations.

Kern County has already reported its first flu-related death, and as a result health officials are making sure you’re aware of the symptoms and know just what to do to protect yourself from the flu.

Noemi Alvarado is always concerned over her children's health.

"Because I have four kids, so if one gets it, they are all going to get it," she said.

Alvarado has a busy schedule, but when she heard the Kern County Public Health Department was offering a flu clinic she jumped at the chance to take them and other parents are looking to protect their children from getting sick as well.

"The flu is serious and individuals need to take it seriously," said Ann Walker from the Kern County Public Health Department.

Health officials anticipated a big turn out and handed out tickets just to manage the long lines.

"Just because of the severity of the flu this year and starting so early in the season and because of this death in the community, we knew that our citizens would be concerned," said Walker.

Symptoms of the flu include fatigue, high fever, coughing and a runny nose.  Health officials say you can avoid spreading germs by always covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze, stay home if you’re sick and washing your hands regularly.

"It's very scary.  My son is 9 years old and so it hits home," said one concerned parent.

Getting your flu vaccinations can be scary for anyone, but leaders with the clinic say it’s painless and are done quickly.

"I thought it was going to hurt, I haven't had any shots in quite a while, but there wasn't even a little pinch," she said.

Public health leaders say the flu season usually takes place between October and April.  People can visit a local pharmacy to get those flu vaccinations, but remember if your child is under the age of nine, officials say they will have to visit a doctor’s office or the health department.

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