Berrien County Health Department to hold flu-shot clinic

Published 9:28 am Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Berrien County Health Department urges residents to protect themselves and their families from the seasonal influenza (flu) by getting a flu vaccine. The Berrien County Health Department will host an all-day, walk-in flu vaccination clinic from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 20, at the Benton Harbor location on Napier Ave.

The flu vaccine is still the single best protection against the flu and it is also helpful in reducing the length and severity of illness if someone does get the flu. Berrien County Medical Director, Dr. Rick Johansen said, “getting vaccinated for the flu as early as possible has advantages as it takes about two weeks for antibodies to develop and provide the protection that will last throughout the flu season.” Residents are reminded that an annual flu vaccine is recommended for everyone ages 6 months and older. Flu vaccination is particularly important for higher risk individuals, such as young children, adults over age 65, pregnant women, and anyone who may have a weakened immune system.

The Berrien County Health Department offers two types of flu vaccines: the flu shot and the nasal-spray flu vaccine, called FluMist. Both are effective in preventing the flu; you may talk to your healthcare provider or a nurse at the Berrien County Health Department flu clinic to determine which kind of vaccine is best for you and your family. Flu shots and FluMist nasal-spray vaccines are both available at the Berrien County Health Department, as well as the high-dose flu vaccine for seniors, and a pneumonia vaccine for those who qualify.

The cost for regular flu shots and FluMist is $30 without insurance, however, the Berrien County Health Department accepts most major insurance plans including Medicaid, Medicare, MI Child, and Blue Cross/Blue Shield insurances, and can provide receipts for other insurances to reimburse for the cost. Lower prices are also available for uninsured children, and no one will be turned away for inability to pay. Please bring insurance cards in order for insurance to be billed.

No appointments are necessary for the clinic on Oct. 20. The Berrien County Health Department will continue to offer flu vaccines throughout the flu season at their offices in Benton Harbor and Niles by appointment only. For more information, please visit the Berrien County Health Department website at, Facebook page at, or call (269) 926-7121.