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MU Health Care offers drive thru COVID-19 and flu vaccination events

KBIA's Rebecca Smith arm - after receiving both her COVID-19 booster and flu shot in 2021 - there are two circular bandaids on her upper arm.
Rebecca Smith
KBIA's Rebecca Smith after receiving both her COVID-19 booster and flu shot in 2021.

University of Missouri Health Care will soon offer Saturday drive-thru vaccination events for both the updated flu and the newly formulated COVID-19 vaccines – beginning this week.

Drive-thru Flu and COVID-19 Vaccination Events: 

MU Health Care is offering Saturday drive-thru flu shot events at South Providence Medical Park 

Sept. 30
Oct. 14 
and Oct. 28 

car-side flu shots to adults and kids 6 months and older from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

The COVID-19 vaccine will also be available to those age 6 and older.

A Fulton drive-thru event will be held at Fulton Family Health on Saturday, Oct. 7 
from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Dr. Laura Morris, a vaccine expert with MU Health Care, said the flu vaccine will be available for anyone six months and older and the COVID vaccine will be available for those six years and older.

She said the idea behind the events is to eliminate barriers to vaccination.

“You can bring your whole family, there's no limit to the number of folks that can come in one car, and we can do a kid's vaccines, which I think is an important thing for busy families,” Morris said. “They don't have to make another appointment. They don't have to go someplace unfamiliar, and the parents and kiddos can get their vaccines at the same time.”

It is also safe and effective to receive the two vaccines together, and Morris recommends it.

“The best protection for the people that you love, the people that you work with, the people that you go to school with, is really to be vaccinated,” Morris added.

Morris said the system secured 1,500 doses of the new Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, and they have no concerns about running out of the vaccine this weekend. MU Health Care is working to obtain more doses for future community and employee vaccination events.

Flu & COVID-19 Vaccination Extended Hours Clinic Events: 

Sept. 27
Family Medicine Clinic in Ashland: extended hours 
from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. 

 Oct. 26 
Family Medicine Clinic in Mexico at the South Clark Medical Building: walk-in event 
from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Oct. 18 
Jackson Road Medical Building in Boonville: 
extended hours walk-in event
 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Oct. 10 
Family Medicine Clinic in Fayette: extended-hours walk-in clinic 
from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Oct. 17 
Battle Avenue Medical Building: extended hours
from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Rebecca Smith

“We will distribute it to all of our outpatient clinics and our outpatient pharmacies,” Morris said. “As soon as we get enough supply to be able to do that.”

MU Health Care will only provide mRNA vaccines like Pfizer and Moderna.

During the last few months, there has been an uptick in COVID cases locally, but Morris said case levels are still far below previous pandemic highs and “our healthcare systems, our clinics, our hospitals, our emergency departments are still, you know, very capably handling the increased numbers of patients.”

For those who have recently had COVID-19, Morris said to wait at least 90 days after an infection before getting the new vaccine.

But she doesn’t recommend waiting to get the flu shot.

“This is prime flu shot getting time because the activity level in the community is still pretty low,” Morris said. “And most people will not have had an opportunity to have influenza in the last several weeks.”

She also spoke about the risk of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which has caused a significant number of hospitalizations the last few infectious disease seasons.

Mizzou Pharmacy Vaccination Clinics: 

Sept. 28: 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. 
at Fairview Pharmacy

Oct. 2: 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. 
at Missouri Orthopaedic Institute 
Conference Room

Oct. 5: 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. 
at Smiley Lane Pharmacy

Oct. 9: 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. 
at South Providence Pharmacy

Oct. 12: 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. 
at Battle Avenue Pharmacy

Oct. 17: 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. 
at Missouri Orthopaedic Institute Conference Room

Oct. 23: 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. 
at South Providence Pharmacy

Oct. 26: 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. 
at South Providence Pharmacy
Rebecca Smith

Currently, older, more vulnerable adults can obtain a prescription for a vaccine against the disease, and a new vaccine for infants and young children is expected soon.

“And just this week, [the] CDC released recommendations about vaccinating pregnant people for RSV so that their protection transmits to their infant,” Morris said. “And giving a prenatal vaccine is one of the most effective ways to help protect young infants.”

The drive thru clinic will run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. this Saturday at the South Providence Medical Park. The clinic asks people to bring a current insurance card, if possible, but no payment is collected at the time of vaccination.

If uninsured or underinsured, people can check with local pharmacies about no-cost COVID-19 vaccines through the federal government’s Bridge Access Program, which is temporarily continuing free coverage of the shot through December 2024.

For more information, visit: https://www.muhealth.org/our-stories/where-get-your-flu-shot

Rebecca Smith is an award-winning reporter and producer for the KBIA Health & Wealth Desk. Born and raised outside of Rolla, Missouri, she has a passion for diving into often overlooked issues that affect the rural populations of her state – especially stories that broaden people’s perception of “rural” life.
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