FORT RUCKER, Ala. (September 25, 2014) -- Lyster Army Health Clinic is scheduled to begin flu vaccinations the first week of November.

This year's vaccination is combinations of what researchers believe will be the three most common influenza viruses around the country: H1N1, H3N2 and the 2012 virus strain, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Flu season can begin as early as October and last until May, which is why getting vaccinated early can help ward off the flu into the New Year.

Between 151 million and 159 million doses of the flu vaccine will be produced for this year's flu season, though more can be produced if necessary, according to the CDC. That's about 20 million more doses than produced last year.

The CDC recommends that children and adults receive the seasonal influenza, or flu shot, every year.

"A yearly flu vaccination is encouraged because the formula for the vaccine is altered each year to keep up with the ever-changing strain of the virus," said Maj. JoAnn Ward, chief of Lyster's preventive medicine department.

Since recent studies showed an improvement in 2-8 year olds combating the flu when given the nasal spray, the CDC suggests children within that age group receive the nasal spray vaccination. However, if the nasal spray vaccine is not immediately available and the flu shot is, children 2-8 years old should get the flu shot.

Flu vaccinations will be available in the preventive medicine department from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Mondays-Fridays. Patients should keep in mind that lunchtime is the busiest time for the department.

For more information on the flu vaccine, call 255-7000.