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MONDAY, OCTOBER 1, 2007
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Alabama clinics prepare to offer flu shots

MONTGOMERY (AP) — Alabama health clinics begin offering flu shots in October through the end of the influenza season.

State Health Officer Dr. Donald Williamson said he expects the state will have a sufficient supply of vaccine this season. He recommended that residents contact a physician or their local health department to be immunized.

“On average, 200,000 people are hospitalized and approximately 36,000 people die each year in the United States from complications associated with influenza,” Williamson said in a statement Friday.

An annual flu shot is recommended for most people, beginning for children at age 6 months to protect against outbreaks, which generally occur from November to March in Alabama.

Flu symptoms include fever and respiratory symptoms such as cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, headache, muscle aches and often extreme fatigue.

Preventive measures include covering the mouth and nose with a tissue or cloth when coughing and sneezing, staying at home when sick, and washing hands frequently.

On the Net

For more information: www.adph.org/immunization or call (334) 206-5023 or toll free at 800-469-4599.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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