Flu

Influenza (Flu) can be unpleasant for anyone, but it can be deadly.

Get Your Flu Vaccine Today!

Most insurance companies provide a flu vaccine at no cost to you.

Most pharmacies and clinics have the flu shot. You can also contact your primary care provider (family doctor) or a community health center.

Use the Vaccine Finder tool to the right to find the vaccine provider nearest you.

Be sure to call ahead to make sure the location accepts your insurance and to make yourself aware of any special protocols that may be in place such as social distancing, face coverings, or scheduled appointments.

Pima County is providing FREE flu shots for anybody at our dedicated flu vaccination center in the Oxford Plaza on 22nd St.

Schedule a flu shot today!

Most people can also be vaccinated at our East, Theresa Lee, and North Office clinics for no cost. 


Who Should Get the Flu Vaccine? Everybody.

Everybody older than 6 months should get a flu shot every year. People over the age of 65, women who will be pregnant during flu season, and those with pre-existing conditions are at higher risk and should really get a flu shot. There are some, like those with a deadly egg allergy or a few health conditions, who are not able to get a flu shot, so it's important that those who can, do. Talk to your health care provider or the Health Department if you have questions. 

CDC - The Flu: A Guide for Parents

English | Spanish

Call the provider before you go to make sure they accept your insurance.

When should I get a flu shot? Now.

According to the CDC, the best time to get a flu shot is before the flu starts spreading in your community, usually before the end of October. Antibodies to fight flu take about two weeks after immunization to develop. If you were unable to get a shot before October, the best time to get one is today.

Everyday steps to stay healthy:

There are steps anyone can take to prevent or lessen the impact of Influenza.
  • Wash hands often and thoroughly 
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow or shirt sleeve, or use a tissue, throw it away and then wash your hands
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth
  • Practice physical distancing
  • Flu viruses can spread from person to person through coughing, sneezing, by touching something with flu viruses on it, and, in some cases through, the air
If Your Child Gets the Flu
CDC Guidance -
If Your Child Gets the Flu

 

Steps to take if you or someone in your family gets the flu:

  • STAY HOME – if sick stay home from work or school
  • CALL FIRST – call your medical practitioner or clinic and tell them you may have the flu BEFORE you leave the house
  • MAKE A PLAN – consider actions to take care of you and your family:
    • What you and your family are going to do if the babysitter is ill
    • If your child becomes ill
    • If you have to stay home to take care of someone who is ill
Flu can cause mild to severe illness, including: fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headaches, and chills. Symptoms of flu and COVID-19 can be very similar, so please follow COVID-19 guidance if you feel ill and monitor your symptoms. 

Health Department clinics do not provide primary care. If you're ill, call your primary care provider (family doctor) before going to the office and discuss what your symptoms are so the staff there can respond appropriately.

You’ve got the flu: Is the Emergency Department for you?

Children

When to bring your child with fever and flu symptoms to the emergency room

  1. If your child is struggling to breathe, breathing fast or is struggling to breath, or their skin has a blueish tinge.
  2. If they're not waking up. It is normal when we’re sick to sleep or rest, but if you can’t get your child to wake during the day, or the child is not interacting, go to the emergency room.
  3. If your child has a high-risk condition, such as heart, lung or kidney disease, or an immune-system disease, and is spiking a high fever (103F-105F).
  4. If your usually affectionate child is so irritable he or she doesn’t want to be held.
  5. If they have a fever AND rash.
  6. If your infant has no tears when crying or has significantly fewer wet diapers for 8 to 10 hours.
  7. If your infant is less than 2 months old and has a fever over 100.4F.

If your child is at high risk of flu complications because of another condition, call your health care provider, otherwise you can probably avoid the emergency room. Try to make children as comfortable as possible at home.

  1. Let them rest.
  2. Make sure that they are getting lots of fluids to avoid dehydration.
  3. Let the fever do its job to fight the virus. However, if your child is uncomfortable, try lowering the body temperature with a lukewarm bath (do not use ice packs or alcohol bath) or giving acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Make sure you give the right dose! Talk to your pediatrician or pharmacists for help in finding the right dose. Do not over bundle them.
You can try to bring the fever down by giving doses of ibuprofen or acetaminophen, but talk to your pediatrician before trying a combination approach. DO NOT GIVE THEM ASPIRIN – there has been an association with Reye’s syndrome. The medications won’t get rid of the flu, but they may help you and your child ride out the flu with less suffering. If the fever persists for more than three days or if your child develops any of the symptoms above, contact your pediatrician.

What doctors can and can’t do in the emergency room

There is nothing doctors would like more than to make your child feel better. When it comes to the flu, they are limited in what they can do. Because the flu is a virus, antibiotics like amoxicillin do not work. In fact, they can be harmful if when used to treat a virus.

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT ANTIBIOTIC MISUSE AND DRUG-RESISTANCE HERE.


While there are antiviral drugs like Tamiflu, there is a very small window at the beginning of the flu where they can have limited effectiveness. Usually, by the time your child is exhibiting symptoms, it’s too late. What the emergency room can do is help if your child is dehydrated or struggling to breathe.

How can we stop the rest of the family from getting sick?Use masks! Stop the droplets.

  1. Use masks to help stop the spread.
  2. Teach your children to cough into their elbows and model the behavior to help reduce the amount of germs in the air.
  3. Make sure everyone in the family practices good hand-washing, and washes their hands frequently.
  4. Make a separate sick room if possible. 
  5. When holding sick children, place their chin on your shoulder so they will not cough in your face.
  6. Get the flu vaccine.
  7. Eat well, get plenty of sleep and exercise.

If you’ve come down with influenza, how do you know when you should see your primary care provider or if you should go to the emergency room?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a flu guidance page on its website to help you determine whether you should head to the emergency room or your doctor. In short, the emergency room should only be used by those who are very sick and are exhibiting emergency warning signs, including:
  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • Sudden dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • Flu-like symptoms that improve but then return with fever and worse cough
Some people are at much higher risk of developing serious complications from the flu than others.

They include:
  • pregnant women or new mothers who have given birth in the past two weeks
  • children, especially those under 2 years old
  • adults over 65
  • people whose body mass index is over 40
  • people with diabetes
  • anyone with a medical condition that compromises his or her immune system
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3950 S. Country Club Road
Ste. 100
Tucson, AZ 85714

(520) 724-7770

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