CAMPBELL COUNTY,TN. (WLAF)- It is peak flu season, which means people still need to get vaccinated.

Peak flu season for 2023-24 is from December to February, according to Sarah Begliutti, pharmacist at Terry’s Pharmacy.

It takes two weeks for the shot to reach full protection, she said. To get ready for February, Begliutti recommends getting the vaccination now.

Numbers for flu cases are on the rise this year.

Last week, there were 14,874 patients across the nation admitted to a hospital for flu related symptoms, she said referencing the CDC Weekly Flu Index.

For this flu season, 14 percent of all outpatient visits have been for the flu. The percentage for the same time frame last year was six.

As of December 30, 2023, a total of 7.98 million fewer doses were administered in pharmacies and medical offices compared with the same time in December 2022, according to the CDC.

Receiving the vaccine not only protects the recipient but those around them. Begliutti said.

While it’s important for those over 65, people with a compromised immune system and pregnant women to receive a flu shot, children should also get it.

“Going back to school after the snow, it is important for children to get a flu shot,” she said.

At Terry’s children ages three and up can be vaccinated in the store.

For those concerned with taking the shot, Begliutti said the formulation has not changed.

“This is the same vaccine it has always been,” she said.

Terry’s Pharmacy has vaccines for the flu, RSV and COVID available, often with no co-pay.

Appointments are not required for vaccines. The staff will also come to the car outside the store if needed, said Begliutti.

Terry’s in LaFollette is located at 310 E Central Ave. The phone number is (423) 562-4928.

The Jacksboro location is at  2715 Jacksboro Pike. The phone number is (423) 563-7455.

People need to be aware that flu signs and symptoms typically come on quickly.

According to the CDC symptoms can include:

  • Fever/feeling feverish or chills
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue (tiredness)
  • Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.