Flu Facts

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Story Updated: Oct 1, 2012

Here is what the CDC wants you to know for 2012/2013.

As summer turns to Fall, it's time to focus on the flu again.

So the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated their recommendations for the 2012-2013 flu season.

Because a flu shot is the first step in protection against the seasonal sickness, the CDC recommends that everyone 6 months and older get a flu vaccine each year. The annual shot is a must because the flu viruses are constantly changing, and the vaccine is formulated a little bit differently each year to keep up with the viruses as they evolve.

Because it can take up to two weeks for the vaccine to take effect, you should also get your vaccination as soon as it's available in your area. Influenza season is often unpredictable, and can begin as early as October.

And never fear if you don't have a regular family doctor. You can find the flu vaccine at your neighborhood drug store, health clinics, and even in some schools. I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV, with the health news for you and your family.

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Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, a nonprofit independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association, is part of a family of companies that finances and delivers vital health care services to 1.8 million people across upstate New York. Excellus BlueCross BlueShield provides access to high-quality, affordable health coverage, including valuable health-related resources that our members use every day, such as cost-saving prescription drug discounts and wellness tracking tools in our Step Up program. To learn more, visit www.excellusbcbs.com