Monday, October 25, 2021
40.0°F

Flu shots available at state VA clinics

by Clark Fork Valley Press
| October 13, 2021 12:00 AM

The Montana Veterans Administration Health Care System is excited to kick off the 2021 flu shot season beginning Oct. 5 as clinics across the state mobilize to help Montana Veterans receive their flu shots with walk-in and drive-up flu clinic options.

Locations include Missoula, Kalispell, Hamilton, Anaconda, Bozeman, Billings, Fort Harrison, Glendive, Great Falls, Havre, Miles City and Glasgow.

The flu clinic schedule is available at https://www.montana.va.gov/features/Flu_Shots.asp. Veterans should bring their Veteran ID.

In addition to these large, one-day flu clinic events, enrolled Montana Veterans have other ways to get their free flu shot:

  • Veterans will be offered flu shots at primary care appointments.

  • Montana Veterans can find community locations to get no-cost flu shots at flu shot locations across Montana (via https://www.va.gov/communitycare/flushot.asp).

“Flu is always a preventable respiratory infection. Last year, veterans and Montanans showed that this is possible,” said Dr. Judy Hayman, Executive Director. “We had low numbers of Veterans sick with the flu in 2020 because people got their flu shot, physically distanced, washed their hands, stayed home when ill, and prevented the spread of illness by wearing a mask.”

The flu vaccine gets updated annually, and veterans should get a flu shot each year. The flu shot is safe and effective, and a person cannot get the flu from the flu shot.

The flu virus most impacts high-risk groups such as adults who are 65 years or older, pregnant women, people in nursing homes and long-term care facilities, individuals with medical conditions (such as heart disease, asthma, and kidney or liver disorders), and people with weakened immune symptoms.

“It’s now more important than ever to get the flu shot as we continue to battle COVID-19. Right now, Montana’s ICUs and Emergency Departments are busy caring for COVID patients,” said Chief of Staff, Dr. JP Maganito. “The flu shot is a safe, compassionate way we can serve others by stopping the spread of the flu virus, and it also keeps ourselves and others healthy, and out of the hospital.”

Veterans who have questions about the flu shot or vaccines are encouraged to contact their provider. Veterans can also reference this Veterans Health Library guide to Flu Shots.

The system serves more than 47,000 enrolled Veterans across Montana — an area roughly 147,000 square miles in size. Veterans are cared for by a staff of 1,400 at 17 sites of care across the state. One third of Montana VA employees are Veterans.

Flu Shot Clinic Schedule (by location)

Missoula VA Clinic: 2687 Palmer Street, Missoula, MT 59808

Walk-In Flu Shots: Missoula-area Veterans can also come into the clinic’s C3 Lobby for walk-in flu shots every Wednesday from 8-10 a.m.

Kalispell VA Clinic: 31 Three Mile Drive, Kalispell.

Walk-In Flu Shot: Flu shots will be available every Wednesday from 8-10 a.m. through Oct. 27. No appointment necessary!

Hamilton VA Clinic: 299 Fairgrounds Road (Suite A), Hamilton, MT 59840

Walk-In Flu Shots: Veterans can receive a flu shot with their next appointment or walk in during normal clinic hours between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Anaconda VA Clinic: 118 E 7th St., Anaconda MT, 59701.

Walk-In Flu Shots: Veterans can receive walk-in flu shots Oct. 12, Oct. 19, and Oct. 26 from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Please enter through the Primary Care Clinic entrance.

Bozeman VA Clinic: 300 North Willson Avenue (Suite 703G), Bozeman, MT 59715

Walk-In Flu Shots: Starting on Oct. 8, Veterans can receive walk-in flu shots every Friday in October from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. Please enter through the Primary Care Clinic entrance.

Billings VA Clinic: 1775 Spring Creek Lane, Billings, 59102

Walk-In Flu Shots: Starting Oct. 14, Veterans can receive walk-in flu shots at the Benjamin Charles Steele VA Clinic (1776 Majestic Lane) each Thursday from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

Appointments: Veterans can receive a flu shot with their next appointment or by calling 406-373-3500 to schedule an immunization appointment any time Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.–4 p.m.

Cut Bank VA Clinic: 8 Second Avenue Southeast, Cut Bank, MT 59427

Walk-In Flu Shots: Veterans can receive a flu shot with their next appointment or walk in during normal clinic hours between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Fort Harrison/Helena VA Medical Center Flu Clinic Information, 3687 Veterans Drive, Fort Harrison

Walk-In Flu Shots: Veterans can receive walk-in flu shots at the Fort Harrison Primary Care Clinic Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. until 4 p.m. To decrease wait time, there is a dedicated walk-in flu clinic at the Primary Care Clinic every Thursday from 8:30 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. Please, enter through the new Primary Care Clinic entrance.

Glendive VA Clinic: 2000 Montana Avenue, Glendive, MT 59330

Walk-In Flu Shots: Veterans can receive a flu shot with their next appointment or by calling 406-373-3500 to schedule an immunization appointment Mondays, Tuesdays, or Fridays from 9 a.m.–noon. Appointments are not necessary but are preferred.

Great Falls VA Clinic: 1400 29th Street South (Suite 1), Great Falls, MT 59405.

Walk-In Flu Shots: Starting Oct. 14, Veterans can receive walk-in flu shots on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9-11 a.m.

Lewistown VA Clinic: 629 Northeast Main Street (Suite 1), Lewistown, MT 59457 .

Walk-In Flu Shots: Veterans can receive a flu shot with their next appointment or walk in during normal clinic hours between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Miles City VA Clinic: 210 South Winchester Avenue, Miles City, MT 59301.

Walk-In Flu Shots: Veterans can receive a flu shot with their next appointment or by calling 406-373-3500 to schedule an immunization appointment anytime Monday - Friday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.