Doctors say flu season is starting to pick up in Alaska, but there's still time to protect yourself with a flu shot.

Dr. Anne Musser, Program Director for Alaska Family Medicine Residency, said getting the shot is the number one way to avoid getting sick. She says a lot of people brush it off, but each year, hundreds of thousands are hospitalized and tens of thousands die from the flu.

Anyone over six months old who asks, Musser said, she tells them: get the shot.

"Should I get a flu shot if I'm pregnant? Should I get a flu shot if I'm over 65? Should I get a flu shot, kind of, with whatever modifier you want to ask and the answer is always, 'Yes, get a flu shot'”, she said.

According to Musser, the best ways to prevent the spread of illness are to wash your hands frequently and stay home if you do get sick.

There are a number of free flu shot clinics this month:

In partnership with the Anchorage Department of Health and Human Services, the Anchorage School District will host free flu shot clinics open to the public. Flu shots are available to anyone six months of age and older. The vaccine, Quadrivalent, is designed to protect against two influenza A and two influenza B viruses. A limited number of the "high dose" flu vaccine will be available for people 65 years of age and older.

  • Friday, Oct. 20
    • ASD Education Center from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 25
    • Clark Middle School from 12:15 p.m. to 3 p.m.
    • Fairview Elementary School from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • Service High School from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
    • Sand Lake Elementary School from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, Oct. 26
    • Clark Middle School from 12:15 p.m. to 7 p.m.
    • Fairview Elementary School from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • Sand Lake Elementary School from 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Community members do not need to show proof of insurance to participate in the clinic. ASD employees must present their insurance card to participate.