ROCKPORT and BELFAST — With flu season just around the corner, The Pharmacy at Pen Bay Medical Center along with Waldo County General Hospital (WCGH) and Belfast Public Health Nursing Association (BPHNA) have scheduled free flu shot clinics to protect individuals and their families.
Pen Bay Medical Center
The free flu clinics at PBMC will be held on Monday, Oct. 7, from 9 a.m. - noon; and Monday, Oct. 14, from 3-6 p.m., in Conference Room A, next to the Bay View Cafe. To reach Conference Room A, enter the hospital through the main entrance and continue down the main corridor. The conference room will be at the end on your left. Walk-ins are welcome at the clinics and at The Pharmacy during regular pharmacy hours.
Flu shots will be available for adults and for youth who are at least 9 years old. Pregnant women and people with certain allergies who may be concerned about preservatives should know that the vaccines are in single dose syringes, which do not have any preservatives. High-dose vaccine will not be available through the PBMC free clinic.
The optimum time to get flu vaccine is before the end of October, ahead of flu activity, according to PBMC, in a news release. While influenza viruses circulate year-round, in Maine the flu season occurs primarily in the fall and winter and can last in to late spring. Flu activity peaks between December and February.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that up to 20 percent of the population – about 60 million people – catch the flu annually.
“A flu shot can help make sure you’re not one of them,” said Tom Edge, ParmD and manager of the The Pharmacy at PBMC.
The Pharmacy at PBMC is a retail pharmacy serving both hospital patients and the local community. It accepts most insurance plans. With easy access and convenient parking, it is open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends and holidays.
Waldo County General Hospital
If you are unable to attend a flu clinic at PBMC, consider attending a free flu clinic at Waldo County General Hospital (WCGH), at 116 Northport Ave., in Belfast.
“These free clinics are a big part of our effort to make our community the healthiest in America,” said Susan Dupler, RN, the Belfast public health nurse, in the release.
Flu shots will be available for adults only.
The WCGH adult flu clinic schedule is as follows:
Oct. 15: from 6:30 - 9 a.m., and 4 - 7 p.m., in the teleconference room on the lower level of the hospital.
Oct. 24: from 4 - 7 p.m. in the classroom.
Nov. 5: from 6:30 - 9 a.m., and 4 - 7 p.m., in the teleconference room.
Nov. 12: from 4 - 7 p.m. in the classroom.
Dec. 3: from 6:30 - 9 a.m., and 4 - 7 p.m., in the teleconference room.
About Pen Bay Medical Center and Waldo County General Hospital
Pen Bay Medical Center and Waldo County General Hospital are part of MaineHealth, a nonprofit integrated health system consisting of eight local hospital systems, a comprehensive behavioral healthcare network, diagnostic services, home health agencies, and more than 1,600 employed and independent physicians working together through an Accountable Care Organization. With more than 19,000 employees, MaineHealth is the largest health system in northern New England and provides preventive care, diagnosis and treatment to 1.1 million residents in Maine and New Hampshire. For more information, visit pbmc.org.