Health experts encourage flu shots to avoid a ‘Twindemic’


Twindemic: the possibility of dealing with the influenza epidemic and COVID-19 pandemic at the same time.

ST. LOUIS — As coronavirus cases continue to climb, health officials are urging everyone to get vaccinated for the flu.

“You might’ve heard those talking on TV about the ‘twindemic’, we’re trying to help prevent the flu with the flu shot,” said Pharmacy Manager Kristen Helton.

Twindemic: the possibility of dealing with the influenza epidemic
and COVID-19 pandemic at the same time.

“Nobody knows what could quite happen if you get the flu and you get the coronavirus. we can speculate and assume that it will be quite bad,” said Dr. Ken Heller.

To prevent that, health experts are highly recommending flu shots, with hospitals like Barnes Jewish Medical Center offering free flu shots to people who register.

“It’s pretty busy today. We’re anticipating giving about 2,000 shots today,” said Helton. “We had to get creative this year in administering vaccinations so we’ve kind of created a drive-through set up so patients and attendees can fill out their forms and drive through and get a shot.”

Helton says in the first hour Saturday they administered about 150 flu shots.
Over at SSM health Cardinal-Glennon, their drive-through flu shots were gone within hours.

“With the awareness of everything that’s going on around us people really want to be able to prevent what they can prevent. And the flu is something they can prevent,” said Dr. Haller.

He says the flu shot is for anyone over 6 months old, and rumors such as the shot gives you the flu, are false.

“It does look like were liable to have a pretty bad flu season, so getting the flu shot is more important than ever,” said Dr. Haller.

Locations of the free SSM Health flu clinics are listed below:

Saint Louis, MO 63044   

St. Joseph Hospital – St. Charles

The parking lot is at the intersection of Jefferson and 4th street, adjacent to the parking garage.

St. Joseph Hospital – Lake Saint Louis

Lake Saint Louis, MO 63367

Behind SSM Health medical group office

St. Louis, MO 63126       

Adult & pediatric vaccinations (6-months and older)

4249 Clayton Ave (enter from Sarah St.)

Format: Drive-through; by appointment (visit www.bjc.org/flushots and click on the event tab to register)

In partnership with the St. Louis Blues

Adult & pediatric vaccinations (6-months and older)

1401 Clark Ave, St. Louis, MO 63103

Format: Walk-in; first come, first served

Free parking available in adjacent parking lots, provided by the Office of the Treasurer for the City of St. Louis

In partnership with The Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis and Christian Hospital

Adult & pediatric vaccinations (6-months and older)

Jamestown Mall Parking Lot

Format: Drive-through; first come, first served

In partnership with The Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis and Christian Hospital

Adult & pediatric vaccinations (6-months and older)

Urban League Northside Community Empowerment Center

Format: Drive-through; first come, first served

All vaccines are free of latex and preservatives. Those 65-years and older are eligible to receive a high dose (HD) vaccine while supplies last. If the HD vaccine is not available, the standard dose can be given.

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