Mustang News File

Rite Aid hosted a flu and COVID-19 vaccine clinic at the Cal Poly Recreation Center Friday amid the approaching flu season and ongoing pandemic.

Cal Poly traditionally provides flu vaccinations on campus every year. However, this year University Spokesperson Matt Lazier said students and employees returning to campus has “raised concerns about a potentially significant winter flu season.”

The clinic ran from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and accepted both appointments and walk-ins. All community members could receive a flu shot, while COVID-19 vaccinations were available explicitly for Cal Poly employees.

Vaccination is a crucial part of the effort to combat the spread of COVID-19 on campus and in the broader local, national and global communities,” Lazier said. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it “may be hard to tell the difference” between the flu and COVID-19 due to similar symptoms, and testing may be needed to confirm a diagnosis. Getting vaccinated against both the flu and coronavirus would reinforce herd immunity.

More flu vaccine clinics will be available to students later this year. Rite Aid pharmacists also recommend visiting the local pharmacy to get vaccinated.

Those wanting a flu shot should bring an ID and medical insurance card. Without proof of insurance or healthcare provider, the flu shot will cost $14. 

Cal Poly students looking to receive a COVID-19 vaccine can visit the Health and Wellbeing building to make an appointment. 

This clinic was made possible by the collaboration of many health organizations in San Luis Obispo, Lazier said.

“While Campus Health and Wellbeing (CHW) continues to provide vaccination opportunities for students, the university has collaborated with San Luis Obispo County, Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center, and Rite Aid to offer COVID-19 vaccine shots to the campus community, with a focus on employees and members of their families,” Lazier said.

As of Sept. 24, 85.5% of faculty and staff are vaccinated against COVID-19, according to the Campus Dashboard. Out of the residential student population, 96.1% are vaccinated.

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