Knoxville medical group reports first flu cases of season

(AP Photo/Patrick Sison)
(AP Photo/Patrick Sison)

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – Summit Medical Group says it now has four confirmed cases of flu in East Tennessee.

The first case was confirmed last week and three more have been confirmed since then. Dr. Eric Penniman, Summit Medical Group medical director, says it’s a sign flu season is hitting early this year. The Centers for Disease Control considers the period from October to May as flu season.

Penniman say the early cases of flu underscore the need for getting flu shots this year.

Summit Medical Group is offering free flu shots on October 1 from 8 a.m. to noon or while supplies last at the following locations:

  • Austin-East Magnet High School
  • Farragut High School
  • Halls High School
  • West High School
  • South-Doyle Middle School
  • Carter High School

Donations are not required, but will be accepted to benefit the Empty Stocking Fund.

Related story: Knoxville free flu shots raise money for Empty Stocking Fund

The Knox County Health Department is offering flu shots at some Knox County public schools, private schools and child care centers. This year only the flu shot will be offered instead of the nasal spray after new data shows the nasal spray is not very effective at preventing the flu. The full schedule of in-school clinics was released on Tuesday.

Tennova is offering free flu shots in Campbell County. The free clinics will be held in the main lobby of LaFollette Medical Center, 923 East Central Avenue, at the following dates and times:

  • Friday, October 7, 10:00 a.m. – Noon
  • Friday, October 14, 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
  • Friday, October 21, 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
  • Friday, October 28, 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

The health system will also offer free flu shots at the Big Creek ATV Festival in downtown LaFollette on Saturday, October 8, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. People must be age 3 or older to get the shot.

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