Bivalent COVID-19 vaccine and Flu Shots are Available
Wednesday September 14, 2022
Both Pfizer and Moderna bivalent boosters are at each BHSJ location.
Residents are able to get their COVID-19 bivalent booster and Flu shots at their local Branch Hillsdale St. Joseph Community Health Agency (BHSJ CHA) office. The agency’s scheduling site is updated to accept scheduling of the bivalent booster. The Pfizer bivalent booster dose is approved for ages 12 and up. The Moderna bivalent booster is available for ages 18 and up. A bivalent booster is given no less than 2 months from the last dose of COVID-19 vaccine received. Those who have not completed a primary vaccination series are not eligible for a bivalent dose of vaccine at this time. Those who received Johnson & Johnson vaccine, can receive a Pfizer or Moderna bivalent booster dose, as long as it has been 2 months since their last dose.
Flu shots are also available at the agency. Flu shots are encouraged for anyone ages 6 months and up. They can be given at the same time as other vaccines, including COVID-19 vaccine. Flu shots are available at no cost for those with Medicaid, Medicare, and most private insurance plans. BHSJ CHA offers free vaccinations, through the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program, to qualifying families with children who are age 18 or younger who are not insured or whose insurance does not cover immunizations.
“While no vaccine is 100% effective at preventing illness, vaccines decrease the potential for serious illness, hospitalization, and death. The bivalent booster dose provides another layer of protection from the Omicron variant, which had not been available before,” says Dr. Karen Luparello, Medical Director. “Now is a great time to schedule vaccination at our office, your primary care provider’s office, or local pharmacy. We continue to encourage residents to talk to their provider or one of our agency’s public health nurses if they have any questions about which vaccinations are right for them.”
In addition to vaccination, stopping the spread of germs is important for the prevention of flu, COVID-19, and the common cold. The following actions can keep germs at bay:
Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
While sick, stay home or limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them. If you must go out, consider wearing a mask to protect others you’re your illness.
The CDC recommends that you stay home 5 days with confirmed COVID-19. If diagnosed with the flu stay home at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. (Your fever should be gone for 24 hours without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.)
Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. After using a tissue, throw it in the trash and wash your hands.
Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer (with at least 60% alcohol).
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like flu.
To get your flu shot from the Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency, please call your local office and schedule an appointment as soon as possible.
Branch County: Monday Immunization clinics – call 517-279-9561 ext. 198
Hillsdale County: Wednesday Immunization clinics – call 517-437-7395 ext. 398
St. Joseph County: Tuesday Immunization clinics – 269-273-2161 ext. 298
The Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency is committed to promoting wellness, preventing disease, providing health care, and protecting the environment.