Influenza (Flu)

Influenza (flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness. Serious outcomes of flu infection can result in hospitalization or death. Some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at high risk of serious flu complications. 

Flu cases typically begin to appear in October and November every year, with "flu season" lasting as late as May. This season, because COVID-19 is already present and spreading in our community, taking steps to prevent the spread of illness is extremely important.

Influenza has similarities to COVID-19 and the common cold. For more information about their similarities and differences, visit the pages below:

Get Your Flu Shot!

This season, getting vaccinated for the flu is more important than ever. It is recommended to get a flu shot by the end of October.

  • A flu shot can prevent illness, medical office visits and hospitalizations that can put additional strain on health care resources and workers.
  • A flu vaccine is the greatest protection available for those at higher risk for developing serious flu complications: pregnant women, people with a chronic health condition, young children, and adults 65 years and older.
  • While some people who get vaccinated still get sick, flu vaccination has been shown in several studies to reduce the severity of illness.
Learn more about the flu vaccine and how it works

Find a Flu Vaccine

Some of the easiest ways to receive a flu shot are at a local pharmacy or with your primary care doctor. The cost of the influenza vaccine should be covered by most insurance policies.

Clay County Public Health Center also offers appointments for flu shots through our Immunization Services. For those that are uninsured or underinsured, CCPHC offers free vaccination for children through the Vaccines for Children program and for adults through the 317 program.

Upcoming Flu Clinic Events with CCPHC

Tuesday, Nov. 10 and Tuesday, Nov. 17
  • CCPHC - Hospital Valley (556 Rush Creek Parkway, Liberty MO 64068)
  • By appointment only. Call 816-595-4355 to schedule an appointment.
  • Open to any Clay County resident age 6 months old and over.
  • Clay County Public Health Center accepts and will bill most major insurance plans including Medicaid. Clay County residents without insurance or with insurance that doesn’t pay for vaccines can receive the vaccine at no cost during these clinics.

Flu Reporting

Every year, confirmed cases of influenza are reported to and tracked by Clay County Public Health Center. Once cases begin to be reported, typically starting in October or November, weekly reports are created by CCPHC to give insight into how the flu is spreading in the county and if any additional mitigation measures are needed. 

Once the first local cases of the 2020-2021 flu season are reported, the weekly reports will be published and posted here.

The Missouri weekly influenza reports can be found here. You can also find national influenza surveillance data here.

Additional Sources of Information