Too early for flu shots? Health Dept. says no

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Summer doesn’t officially end for a few more weeks. But some stores across the metro are already offering flu shots.

Both the Health Department and Walgreens say it’s not too early to get one. The CDC says flu vaccination should begin soon after the vaccine becomes available, ideally by October.

The Health Department says studies about how long flu vaccine protection lasts in your body is inconclusive. The mentality is better to be safe now than sorry later.

“Some feel that it may wear off as the season progresses, but it’s much better to have at least some protection with it starting to wear off, then to have forgotten and have no protection at all,” Jeff Hershberger with the Kansas City Health Department said.

This year a four-strain vaccine is being made widely available. Last year most vaccines only protected against three strains.

“The strain that protects against three has two Type A and flus and one Type B, and basically what that means is it’s two of the more common ones, and one of the more rare ones,” Hershberger said. “The four strain vaccine protects against two As and two Bs.”

This year’s vaccine protects against the same strains as last year.