Flu shots already being offered at some Valley pharmacies

FILE: A woman receives a flu shot. While a mild flu season is coming to an end, experts caution...
FILE: A woman receives a flu shot. While a mild flu season is coming to an end, experts caution about the possibility of a second wave.(American Heart Association)
Published: Aug. 17, 2022 at 4:14 AM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- It might seem crazy to start talking about flu shots in August, but flu vaccines are already being offered at all CVS Pharmacy and MinuteClinic locations across Arizona.

“It actually isn’t earlier than normal. Flu shots we typically give around early Fall so that includes August,” Justin Ellis, District Leader at CVS Health, said.

Some health experts believe this flu season could be worse than recent ones, judging by what has happened in the Southern Hemisphere.

“We’ve been seeing a lot of high numbers coming out of Argentina and Australia, which is going to be indicative of potentially having a higher flu season, a busier flu season, a sicker population if we don’t be proactive and get our immunizations early and up to date,” Ellis added.

During the 2020-2021 season, flu cases were very low in Arizona because of COVID-19 precautions. Numbers did increase last flu season but were still lower than average.

“We had a lot of hand washing before, we had a lot of masks, and this season, you know with the masks coming off, we really are a little bit more vulnerable to a lot of the things that are floating around,” Ellis said.

If you want to get vaccinated right away, CVS Health says patients can schedule an appointment digitally or walk in to any CVS Pharmacy and MinuteClinic location seven days a week.

The Maricopa County Department of Public Health tells Arizona’s Family it has not received any doses of the flu vaccine yet but will offer the vaccine at its immunization clinics and at community vaccine events once its shipment arrives, likely in September or October.