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Hispanics Less Likely to Get Flu Shot

CDC/ Judy Schmidt

Hospitals and clinics in Austin and Travis County are reporting high levels of flu activity. Across Texas, six kids have died so far this year from flu-related illnesses.

Doctors say the best way to protect yourself is to get a flu shot.

But the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says Hispanics are 10 percent less likely to get vaccinated than non-Hispanic whites. According to a CDC survey, in March of 2012, less than 40 percent of Hispanic adults had been vaccinated. That's compared to around 50 percent of non-Hispanic white adults.

Doctors say there are a variety of reasons why Hispanics are less likely to get a flu shot. Reasons could include lack of insurance and lack of time.

"If you're working and you miss a few hours of pay to come get a flu shot, it's not, you know, in your best interest," Dr. Javier Rodriguez told Jill Replolge of the Fronteras Desk.

Rodriguez is the medical director of a network of clinics in San Diego. He also says some patients think the vaccine will give them the flu. That’s not true.

Flu season usually peaks in January or February but could continue through May.

Laura first joined the KUT team in April 2012. She now works for the statewide program Texas Standard as a reporter and producer. Laura came to KUT from the world of television news. She has worn many different hats as an anchor, reporter and producer at TV stations in Austin, Amarillo and Toledo, OH. Laura is a proud graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia, a triathlete and enjoys travel, film and a good beer. She enjoys spending time with her husband and pets.
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