TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The start of fall means football, cooler weather and maybe even a pumpkin spiced latte. But, it also means flu season. Some doctors warn, this year could be a doozie.
In fact, nearly 100 students at the University of Southern Mississippi have already tested positive for the virus.
“A good percentage, about one out of five go into the chest,” says Dr. Joe Terry. “And you end up with a viral bronchitis or pneumonia, and that’s why it’s really bad on the little babies, the infants and the old folks.”
Here in the bay area, many places are already offering the vaccinations. Places like CVS and Walgreens have online scheduling and walk-in clinics, as well as at the health departments.
“We have to plan for a moderate to high season every year. When we order our vaccines that’s what we look at,” said Ryan Pedigo, Director of Public Health Preparedness for Hillsborough County.
He says there are certain qualities physicians look at to determine what vaccines are available this season.
“The basic flu vaccine covers three strains. It covers last year’s strains and they always throw in H1N1 because of how easily it’s transferred human to human,” said Pedigo.
Clinics are no longer offering the nasal spray vaccination as it has been phased out due to ineffectiveness. Many pharmacies are already offering the vaccines. The health department in Hillsborough County will start offering them in October.