Influenza starts to make its presence known in October and November. For some - especially senior citizens and health care workers - the dangers are especially acute.
Vaccines are available and, once again this year, a number of opportunities are available to get free flu shots in the neighborhood.
Caritas Carney Hospital will have two clinics inside the hospital next month. The first is on Wednesday, Nov. 7 from 9-11 a.m. at the hospital's basement level medical clinic. A second clinic is set at Carney on Thursday, Nov. 15 from 4-6 p.m. in the Area C basement.
Caritas Carney is also taking flu clinic on the road to local churches "in an effort to seek out the hard to reach elders, disabled and others at risk." The clinics are free and open to the general public. Those on Medicare should bring their cards with them for identification purposes only. The vaccine is not recommended for persons who are allergic to eggs or egg products. People over 65 years of age, those with chronic lung or heart disorders and those with chronic diseases are especially urged to get the vaccine.
The schedule for the church-based clinics is as follows:
St. Gregory's Church, Sunday, Oct. 28, 8:30 a.m.-12:00
St. Brendan's Church, Saturday, Nov. 3, 3-5:30 p.m.
St. Peter's Church, Sunday, Nov. 4, 9 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
St. Ann's Church, Saturday, Nov. 17, 3-5 p.m.
St. Mark's Church, Sunday, Nov. 18, 9-11:30 a.m.
Blessed Mother Theresa of Calcutta, Sunday, Nov. 18, 9-11:30 a.m.
St. Ambrose Church, Sunday, Nov. 18, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Uphams Corner Health Center is also providing free flu clinics in November. The shots and nasal vaccines will be available of Monday, Nov. 5 from 9 a.m.-noon and on Wednesday, Nov. 7 from 5-8 p.m. The health center is located at 415 Columbia Rd. Call 617-287-8000 x8076 for more information.