Chattanooga organizations team up with Walgreens to give flu shots
After one of the most deadly flu seasons in decades last year, health officials are bracing for this year.
According to a recent study by the CDC, five to 20 percent of Americans will get the flu.
Several Chattanooga organizations took it upon themselves to help give out flu shots Saturday.
Nurse practitioner Michelle Morris wanted to help people get vaccinated for this flu season.
Grace Pointe Church, the local Coalition of 100 Black Women and the Hamilton County Coalition got together to help give flu shots and educate people about the vaccine.
Morris and Pastor Marcellus Barnes say the pros of the shots outweigh the cons.
"That's worth more than that. That's worth a life. You can decrease hospitalizations, getting any other kind of viral and bacterial infections, which increase the cost of healthcare,” Morris said.
"If you compare the pain of what you have to go through to what you may go through without getting that help, there's no comparison,” Barnes said.
Not only were they giving flu shots, but they were also teaching people how to properly store and dispose of prescription medicine.
Vanessa Spotts with the Hamilton County Coalition urges people to take expired medicines to local law enforcement or to their designated drop spots.
She says people who dispose of medicines improperly could have serious consequences for others.
"Because a lot of those medications go into the water system that they cannot in the end, filter out. And as they recycle water, some of those chemicals are then getting back into infants and seniors, and we don't want that."
They believe education will make everyone healthier.
"Some people don't want a handout, they want a hand up. And so I see this as a hand up to getting people healthy,” Barnes said.
Flu shots are available at Walgreens, CVS and local pharmacies.
The list of medication drop off boxes can be found on The Hamilton County Coalitions' website.