YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – Just because we are in a global pandemic doesn’t mean the seasonal flu won’t be a threat around the Valley, so the importance of getting a flu shot this year is being emphasized.
“It’s important to get a flu shot this year because we want to do everything that we can to not get sick this year,” said Sydney Metzel, with On Demand Occupational Medicine.
An event on Monday was like a mini health fair at Direction Home of Eastern Ohio. On Demand Occupational Medicine was a partner. Both say your yearly flu shot may be more important than ever this year.
“With our hospitals seeing an influx in patients for COVID reasons, we want to make sure that we’re staying out of there for things like the flu or common cold. Getting a flu shot is one of those things we can do to prevent that hospital influx,” Metzel said.
On Demand brought over 300 flu doses, but this group also focused on ways to protect people from coronavirus and the flu, including giving each patient a mask, hand sanitizer and hand cream.
“Nobody wants to be somebody that has not only COVID-19 but also the flu. So if we have any opportunity to make sure that that doesn’t happen, we want to do it,” said Cassandra Valentini, with Direction Home of Eastern Ohio.
Organizers are asking participants to stay in their cars in order to follow social distancing guidelines. They’re also asking them to put on their mask before driving up. Once they’re in place, they can roll up their sleeve and get their flu shot.
“We’re making sure we’re wearing our masks. We’re actually giving away free hand sanitizer. Just basically coming outside, getting some fresh air and making sure we’re maintaining our social distancing,” said Megan Wine, director of sales for On Demand Occupational Medicine.
Organizers want to prepare people for the flu season and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. They say they may plan another clinic to try to help through the upcoming holidays.
“That way, we can enjoy the holidays and spend time with our family as much as we can,” Wine said.
In the meantime, they’re encouraging everyone to get a flu shot from their doctor or pharmacist.