This is the confession of a health writer.
I didn’t get a flu shot.
And I got the flu.
I have no excuse. I’m not afraid of needles. I don’t have a bad reaction to the vaccine. Time wasn’t a factor: There were plenty of opportunities to get the vaccine. The Fresno County Department of Public Health had flu-shot clinics. My doctor’s office had vaccine. On any weekend, I could have made a quick stop at a chain pharmacy and rolled up my sleeve. Even worse, The Bee had a shot clinic early in December.
I ignored them all and on Friday, I paid the price.
A sore throat that started at noon was joined that evening by a fever and a raging headache. During the night, aching arms and legs, plus the sore throat, the fever and the headache. By the third day, sheer exhaustion. Then, on the fourth day, the cough.
I’m still coughing … and tired.
But I’ve learned my lesson: I’m going to get a flu shot — Monday.
Even though I’ve had the flu, there’s more than one strain in the air and I am not going to be unprotected again.
The Fresno County Department of Public Health is holding a clinic today from 4-7 p.m. at the American Legion Hall, 3509 N. First St. Another clinic will be Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at Sierra Vista Mall, 1050 Shaw Ave., Clovis. Flu shots also are available at the department at 1221 Fulton Mall in downtown Fresno from 8 a.m. to noon and 1-4 p.m. That’s where I’m heading Monday morning. I don’t want to cough on others in a flu-shot line.
Information regarding other flu vaccination opportunities can also be found at www.flu.gov
or the department’s website or call the toll-free
Influenza Information Line at 1-888-993-3003.