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Health officials say flu vaccine season is here

Ellen Abbott
Onondaga County Executive receives her flu shot Thursday in Syracuse.

Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney rolled up her sleeve this week, not to work, but to show central New Yorkers how easy it is to get a flu shot.

"This took me less than a minute, and if you get the flu, you are down for a couple days and you’re making everybody around you sick,” Mahoney said. “It is a much better use of your time to take one minute and get your flu shot.”

Onondaga County is offering free flu shots every Wednesday at the Civic Center in downtown Syracuse for residents while supplies last. County Health Commissioner Dr. Indu Gupta doesn’t expect the county to run out of vaccine this year.

"There has not been any shortage of the vaccine, either throughout the United States or in our own community, so there’s plenty of flu vaccine” Gupta said. “We’re asking everyone to take time [and] make sure you go to your doctor, provider, pharmacist, wherever you want to do it, including our own clinic.”

Gupta said the only difference this flu season is FluMist will not be offered after experts determined it wasn’t effective. Gupta said flu season generally stretches from November to May.

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.