Your Annual Flu Shot Is (Still) Important

The flu shot is recommended every year, including this year.

One may ask, “why do I need a flu shot if we didn’t even have any flu cases last year?”

That is a legitimate question. Why didn’t we have any flu cases? Is there even any flu anymore? Did COVID-19 take over the flu?

Let’s consider the nature of influenza (or seasonal flu) and the COVID-19 viruses. Both cause respiratory symptoms; both can be deadly; and most importantly to this discussion, both can be avoided in the same ways. This includes staying home when you are sick; wearing a mask; avoiding large groups; and getting vaccinated.

Let’s now consider what we all just got done doing-lots of staying home, lots of mask wearing, lots of avoiding groups, and some vaccinating.

So if you’re doing less masking and more gathering, mark your calendar for our drive-through flu clinic on Sept. 30 and get vaccinated against the seasonal flu.

The flu vaccine does not contain the COVID-19 vaccine, and does not protect against COVID-19. While no vaccine is perfect, the annual flu shot may help you to lessen the severity of the flu if you do contract the virus, keeping you out of the ER and recovering quicker than without the vaccine’s protection.

The Richland County Health Department will be holding its annual mass flu shot clinic as a drive-thru at Richland County Fire Hall, Sidney, Sept. 30, from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. The Drive-Thru Clinic will serve adults only, and offers both regular and high-dose flu shots. No other shots will be given during the clinic. No COVID-19 vaccine will be given. No appointment is needed. Flu shots cannot be given to those who have animals in their vehicles. Children may be in the vehicle, but may not receive flu shots. Follow traffic signs to enter the Fire Hall from the north side.

Do not attend the clinic if you are not feeling well. Do not attend if you are waiting for test results from a COVID-19 test. Do not attend if you have COVID-19 or have been exposed to COVID-19 in the last 14 days.

Flu shots, as well as other vaccines, for children and families will be available during regular clinic hours, on Monday and Wednesday, 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. by appointment. Additional clinic hours are the second Wednesday until 6 p.m., and the third Thursday of the month, from 1-4 p.m. by appointment. COVID-19 vaccines are available on Tuesdays from 12:30-3 p.m. without appointment. Check the Department Facebook page at for changes to regular clinic hours.

For further information or to inquire about group billing, contact Richland County Health Department at 406-433-2207.


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