The clinic is running a social media contest to raise awareness about flu shots before flu season.
If a student or faculty member receives a shot from the Medical and Counseling Care Center (MACCC) or one of the flu clinics around campus, follows the MACCC on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook and then takes a selfie with their bandage on with the hashtag #ACUFluFighter, they will be entered into a drawing to receive a gift card donated by one of the local restaurants.
Each shot is $25 but if a student or employee (or their dependents aged 12 and older) is covered by ACU medical insurance, then there is no charge.
Cindy Gravitt, office assistant of the MACCC, said, “I believe it’s our job as the ACU Medical Clinic to promote health on campus and this is one of the easiest and most effective ways to do that.”
This year the MACCC is partnering with the ACU School of Nursing to administer the shots. Second-year nursing students under supervision from their instructors will be giving the shots, as well as the nurses from the MACCC.
“I deliberately had an ACU nursing student so I could experience firsthand what that was like and she did a fantastic job,” Gravitt said.
The type of flu vaccination being administered this year is a quadrivalent, which contains the ability to immunize someone against four different strains, as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This vaccination is also a dead virus, so it does not have the ability to replicate.
“A lot of people think they can get the flu from the flu shot, it’s actually not true,” Gravitt said.
According to the CDC, the typical incubation period for influenza is one to four days. Most healthy adults may be able to infect others beginning one day before symptoms develop and up to a week, days after becoming sick. The patients who claim to have gotten sick from the flu shot most likely did not give their bodies enough time to build up the immunity, even after receiving the vaccination.
Gravitt said for this reason, the MACCC gives the flu shots during the months of October and November so immune systems will be ready well in advance for the peak of the flu season.
According to another study done in the last 43 years by the CDC, the results indicated February as the peak month for the flu season, with December as a second.
February at ACU is also Sing Song season, in which Gravitt said she highly recommends any student planning to participate to get a flu shot now. She said last February the MACCC was “absolutely overwhelmed” and had to turn students away.
The MACCC will host seven more flu shot clinics in various locations around campus until Nov. 2.
“We’d love to have more followers so we can get information out and raise awareness about different issues both mental and physical.” Gravitt said, “and sometimes we have a lot of fun with our posts.”