The Spokane Regional Health District is recommending people get their flu shots now as the virus is beginning to circulate in Spokane.
Spokane had its first hospitalization for flu within the past week. Health officials said the sooner individuals get vaccinated the better.
Last flu season, 616 people were hospitalized due to flu in Spokane County and 31 deaths were attributed to flu-related complications.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends all people 6 months of age and older get immunized against flu. The vaccine promotes antibody protection within two weeks.
The health district is partnering with local agencies to offer free vaccination clinics:
• Wednesday, Oct. 3
-Greenacres Middle School, 17409 E. Sprague Ave., 3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.
• Tuesday, Oct. 23
-Farwell Elementary School, 130005 N. Crestline St., 3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.
• Wednesday, Oct. 24
-Liberty Park Community Development Center, 1417 E. Hartson Ave., 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
According to the CDC, flu killed people more people in the U.S. last winter – about 80,000 people – than any seasonal influenza in decades.