Preparing For Flu Season in NEPA

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SCRANTON---Experts say there is no telling when flu season will start or how bad it will be, but they said now is the time to prepare.

"Obtaining the flu vaccine is the prime importance if you want to prevent yourself from getting the flu," said Dr. Joseph Koval from Geisinger CMC.

Dr. Koval said season was a relatively mild flu season.

It takes about 6 weeks for a flu shot to be fully effective, so Dr. Koval suggested folks get them now.

Bill Valentine works in a school district.

He gets a flu shot every year and takes all the precautions he can to keep from getting sick.

"Snotty noses and all that stuff and desks and pencils that I pick up off the floor and throw in my used container bin, and I try to be very faithful in washing my hands all the time," said Valentine.

"I don't want to be coughing, throwing up, all that good stuff so that's why I get it done," said Rob Palonis of Scranton.

Experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predict manufacturers have made between 135 and 139 million doses of the flu vaccine.

The CDC monitors how effective those vaccines are each year.

Dr. Koval said it is key to remember the flu can be deadly.

"Science tells us that you have a great chance of avoiding the flu or complications from the flu if you simply get the flu vaccine. "

The flu shot is especially recommended for people in nursing homes, medial facilities, those in schools and in other crowded areas.

If, however, you are pregnant or have health issues or concerns, you should talk with your doctor about getting a flu shot.

Dr. Koval said it is also important to remember it is medically impossible to get the flu from the flu vaccine.

Click HERE for what you should know for this 2013-2014 influenza season.