Why it’s important to receive both a flu and COVID-19 vaccine

KELOLAND.com Original

FILE – In this Feb. 7, 2018 file photo, a nurse prepares a flu shot at the Salvation Army in Atlanta. The flu forecast is cloudy and it’s too soon to know if the U.S. is in for a third miserable season in a row, but health officials said Thursday, Sept. 26, 2019 not to delay vaccination. (AP Photo/David Goldman, File)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — While multiple companies are working on a vaccine for COVID-19, health departments all over the nation are preparing to distribute it, including South Dakota.

The South Dakota Department of Health said in an email it’s been working over the past several months to prepare for the eventual distribution of a vaccine. Officials say they are working with health care systems, tribes and other partners to be ready to distribute the vaccine.

According to the email, groups classified as priority populations will be the first to receive the vaccine.

“We are also working with health care providers and other partners across the state to be able to vaccinate others when the vaccine becomes more widely available in 2021.”

In the meantime, the department is encouraging South Dakotans to receive the flu shot. Officials believe during the 2020-2021 cold and flu season, getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever as it will help limit the strain on health care resources for care of patients with COVID-19. 

The Department of Health says several communities in the state will offer free flu shots, plus health care providers and pharmacies will provide flu vaccines to people too.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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