As flu season winds down, health officials continue to encourage - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

As flu season winds down, health officials continue to encourage getting vaccinated

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Public health officials continue to recommend that the public receives flu and measles vaccinations. Even though the flu season is nearing its traditional seasonal end, Hawaii's high visitor rate keeps state residents vulnerable year round.

Additionally, though the public is experiencing a less effective rate from this year's flu vaccines based on the timing of its creation and the virus' mutation rate, officials still believe that the vaccine can reduce the intensity and duration of influenza if one becomes infected.

Officials further stress that with the recent measles outbreaks across several U.S. states impacting a majority of people who were never vaccinated, they are urging everyone who's eligible, to get the MMR -- or Measles, Mumps, Rubella -- vaccination to protect against the highly contagious and potentially deadly disease.

Usually a first dose of MMR is given from the ages of 12 to 15 months, followed by a second dose between the ages of 4 and 6 years old. Adults though born after 1956, who may also not have a valid record of having received both immunizations during their childhood and/or a blood test to show immunity, are also recommended to receive the shot.

Health officials say another dose won't cause any harm, but will serve to wake up the immune system even if you may have already had the original doses. CDC officials stress there is "no link to the measles vaccination and autism." Talk with your doctor about your eligibility.

Walgreens pharmacies are also able to provide the MMR vaccination to people who are 18 years and older, without a prescription. Talk with a pharmacist about your eligibility.

Related links:

Seasonal Flu: CDC Who Should Get Vaccinated

Measles: CDC Who Should Get Vaccinated

Measles Travel Watch Level 1 - Philippines

Measles Travel Watch Level 1 - Vietnam

Walgreens Vaccination Information and Forms

State of Hawaii, Department of Health

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