Pre-booking your flu vaccine gives you the greatest opportunity to stay healthy during the cold and flu season, because the earlier you are vaccinated, the lower the chance you will be exposed to the virus while you are unprotected.
You may think that you only need to get a flu shot if you are at a high risk for contracting the flu, i.e.., if you are elderly, pregnant, or have a weak immune system. However, healthy people can catch the flu, too. So it is very important that everyone takes the necessary precautions.
Finding a Pre-Booking Vaccine Clinic
Pre-booking vaccine clinics are often held at your local pharmacy, your school, or your place of employment. Announcements for these clinics are usually published in your local newspaper, on posters and flyers, or via email from any facilities who has you on their mailing list. If any of them require you to sign up, you should do so immediately.
If you are employed by a hospital, nursing home, or other medical facility, you may be required to receive your injection before the flu season even begins.
Making an Appointment
Contact your doctor early to schedule your appointment so that you can receive the vaccine as soon as it is available. It is doubly important to do this if you are:
- Age 65 and over
- A heart disease patient
- An autoimmune disease patient
- A cancer patient
- Diagnosed with a compromised immune system
- A patient with a history of suffering from a severe case of the flu
A pre-booked appointment should also be made for all children under two years of age.
What if You are a Home Healthcare Patient?
Your caregiver can pre-book an appointment for you with your family doctor, local healthcare facility, or a participating pharmacy. If you are homebound, a nurse with the correct licensing from your home healthcare agency can administer it to you in your home. Inform your caregiver as early as possible of your request.
Since the vaccine is usually available as early as September, you might want to have this conversation right after Labor Day. Planning it around the holiday should make it easier to remember.
If your home health care agency does not provide this service, be sure to ask a friend or loved one to take you to one of the local facilities that is participating in the vaccination program.
Utilize your Regular Pharmacy
Most local pharmacies will receive their shipment of flu vaccines early if their customers call ahead to request them. Your pharmacist is trained to properly administer the injection. Just pre-book your appointment, and you can receive the vaccine as early in the season as possible.
Guidelines for Medical Centers
Facilities such as clinics, doctor’s offices, hospitals, and urgent care centers should order their vaccine supply as early as possible so they are prepared to accept pre-booked appointments. Your medical supply company offers pre-booking vaccines of all kinds for all ages so you are prepared to meet the needs of your customers.
Things to Keep in Mind
There are certain people who should not receive a vaccine who include:
- Those who have experienced a negative reaction to the vaccine previously
- Those who are ill
- Those who have a history of Guillian-Barre syndrome
If you are allergic to eggs, ask your provider to order Flublok. Be sure you receive your vaccination in a facility equipped to deal with anaphylaxis just in case it occurs.
Pre-booking is an efficient method of flu prevention for the entire family.