OKLAHOMA CITY - Many local residents, as well as county health department employees, are prepared for the upcoming flu season.
The Oklahoma City-County Health Department offered free flu shots Wednesday morning at the State Fair Grounds, but as it turns out, it was an exercise in preparedness for those giving the shots, too.
Besides flu prevention, one of the biggest goals is preparedness for a time when lots of people need help so they can get this done as quickly, easily and hopefully, painlessly as possible.
The swift assembly line of sorts prepares those at the Oklahoma City-County Health Department for a real-life crisis, like the H1-N1 outbreak of 2008.
"We had them where 3,000 people showed up," said Phil Maytubby with the Oklahoma City-County Health Department.
There's even a rush for help during the regular flu season, like last fall when local mortality rates rose, and the health department set up a drive-thru for shots.
"We had, like, 425 people show up in two hours to get vaccinations out of a car," Maytubby said.
Right now, there's no outbreak, but there's still a need.
"They say the older you get the more you need to make sure to take your flu shot and we're not spring chickens anymore," said Gary Hankins, who got his shot with his wife Kathryn.
Experts recommend you get the shot if you can, to lessen your chance of a hospital stay, or worse yet, death.
"We're part of a state-wide exercise so there will be health departments all over the state going at different times during this week," Maytubby said.
Even if you're not a huge fan of shots, it'll be over before you know it.
Below is the full list of places you can get a flu shot for free as part of the exercise October 7-11.
- Alva Recreation Complex – Oct. 8
- Beaver County Fairgrounds – Oct. 10
- Bristow High School – Oct. 8
- Claremore Expo Center – Oct. 9
- Cleveland County Health Department (Norman) – Oct. 10
- Cotton County Expo Building – Oct. 8
- Craig County Fairgrounds – Oct. 10
- Elk City Convention Center – Oct. 9
- Hugo Agriplex (OSU Extension Office) – Oct. 8
- Jackson County Expo Center – Oct. 8
- Kiamichi Technology Center – Oct. 8
- Laverne School (Shackelford Hall) – Oct. 8
- Meridian Technology Center (Stillwater Campus) – Oct. 10
- Oklahoma State Fair Park (OKC) – Oct. 8
- Oral Roberts University Mabee Center (Tulsa) – Oct. 8
- Pittsburg County Health Department – Oct. 11
- Pontotoc Technology Center – Oct. 8
- Redlands Community College (El Reno) – Oct. 10
- Seminole State College – Oct. 11
- Tillman County Health Department – Oct. 8
- William Ray Memorial Park (Madill) – Oct. 10