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How You Can Still Get Your Flu Shot

Flu vaccines have become scarce at local pharmacies, but your primary physician still has them. Also, the Bethlehem Health Bureau will have a clinic on Monday afternoon.

 

If you were planning to visit a pharmacy this weekend to finally get your flu shot, you may be out of luck.

Rite Aid and CVS pharmacies throughout Bethlehem were reporting Friday that they had run out of doses of flu vaccine to give to walk-in customers.

A pharmacist at the Walgreen’s at 2979 Linden St. said all the store has left are high-dose vaccines for those who are 65 and older.

However, all hope is not lost if you are still hoping to be vaccinated. The St. Luke’s University Health Network still has an ample supply of vaccines that are available through affiliated primary care physicians, according to a spokeswoman.

The city of Bethlehem Health Bureau also has a supply and is planning a flu vaccine clinic at City Hall on Monday afternoon from 1 to 3 p.m.

Any city resident or child who lives in the Bethlehem Area School District is eligible to receive the vaccine at the clinic for $10 a dose.

Do you know of anywhere else in Bethlehem where flu shots are available? Tell us in the comments.

Several pharmacists said there had been a run on vaccinations in the past week, when the flu started making news. A couple said they hoped to get more doses in the next week. Others were less optimistic. “We may not be getting it back,” one pharmacist said.

Last weekend an infant died at Lehigh Valley Hospital – Cedar Crest from complications from the virus. LVH – Cedar Crest also saw fit to open a separate emergency room tent outside the hospital to deal with an influx of flu patients. The state Department of Health has reported that there have been at least 22 flu-related deaths so far this winter.

On Friday, the Catholic Diocese of Allentown announced two changes at Masses this weekend as a result of the outbreak. On Friday, Allentown Bishop John Barres announced there will be:

  • No drinking from a chalice during Holy Communion.
  • No physical contact during the sign of peace. (Instead of a handshake, parishioners may bow or nod to their fellow worshipers.)

These directives are temporary and will remain in effect until the bishop withdraws them.

For tips on avoiding infection, flu symptoms and treatment, read this announcement posted by St. Luke’s University Health Network.

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