OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The Oklahoma Caring Vans are helping to fight the spread of the flu virus in the Sooner State this season.

Officials say the program’s nine mobile units have been traveling throughout the state and are expected to provide nearly 9,000 flu vaccinations to Oklahoma children.

Flu season typically runs from October through April. Because strains of the flu change each year, the annual flu shot is the best way to avoid the flu and complications associated with the virus.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, children are at greater risk for flu related health issues and commonly require medical care, especially under the age of five.

The Caring Van program provides a critical resource for many children who may not receive a flu shot in a traditional clinic setting.

The Oklahoma Caring Van Program provides immunizations and other preventative services at no charge to children, aged six weeks through 18 years, who are uninsured, Medicaid eligible or American Indian. In addition to flu shots, the Caring Vans provide all immunizations required by Oklahoma law for enrollment in school or child care.

Infants must be 6 months of age to receive flu vaccine.

Immunizations are given on a first come, first served basis. For each child immunized, a parent or guardian must provide current shot records and complete paperwork.

A full schedule of clinics can be found at on the Oklahoma Caring Foundation website or Facebook page.