CHICAGO – As part of its ongoing efforts to ensure Chicagoans get a flu shot, the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) is partnering with Walgreens, CVS and Jewel-Osco retail pharmacies, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL) and health care organizations across the state for “Vaccinate Illinois Week,” the first ever statewide influenza (flu) vaccinate drive held December 8-14.
Vaccinate Illinois Week is an expansion of last year’s successful Vaccinate Chicago Week, organized by CDPH, Walgreens and BCBSIL, which resulted in an increase in vaccinations delivered to Chicago residents.
While flu outbreaks can happen as early as October, flu activity usually peaks in January or later. During Vaccinate Illinois Week, partner organizations host flu vaccine clinics to promote health and expand access to the flu vaccine to keep Illinoisans healthy through the holiday season and beyond.
“It’s not too late to get a flu shot,” said Dr. Julie Morita, medical director for the CDPH Immunization Program. “It’s important for people across the state to take steps that keep them healthy during flu season and vaccination is the best form of protection. In fact, Vaccinate Illinois Week offers hundreds of opportunities for Illinoisans to get a flu shot.”
In Chicago, CDPH is hosting five Vaccinate Illinois Week events where Chicagoans can get a free flu shot, including a special family-focused vaccine clinic with entertainment and prizes at Ford City Mall on Dec. 14 from noon to 5 p.m.
Dec. 9 Mexican Consulate 204 South Ashland Avenue 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Dec. 12 Little Village Council 3610 West 26th Street 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Dec. 13 City Hall 121 North LaSalle Street 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Dec. 14 15th Ward 3045 West 63rd Street 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Dec. 14 Ford City Mall 7601 South Cicero Avenue Noon to 5 p.m.
Public health officials recommend that everyone six months of age and older get a flu shot, especially pregnant women, young children, people 65 years of age and older and anyone with underlying health conditions like asthma, diabetes or a weakened immune system. A flu shot is needed every year because flu viruses are constantly changing.
Vaccinate Illinois Week is a statewide observance of National Influenza Vaccination Week, an annual initiative led by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to educate the public about the importance of influenza (flu) vaccination throughout the fall and winter months.
For a list of all Vaccinate Illinois Week events and partner organizations visit www.CityofChicago.org/FLU and follow #VaccinateIL on Twitter and Facebook.