Villanova Hosts Flu Vaccine Clinic

Lydia McFarlane

Last week, the University hosted its seasonal flu vaccine clinic. Since it is the beginning of flu season, and we are still in the midst of an ongoing pandemic, the University thought it imperative to bring an accessible flu shot clinic to campus for students and faculty/staff. 

According to the CDC, September and October are the best months to get vaccinated against the flu, as these early fall months begin the flu season for the following fall and winter months. Like most vaccines, the flu vaccine can help prevent the severity of the virus if one were to become ill with it. 

While some people who get a flu vaccine may still get sick, flu vaccination has been shown in several studies to reduce severity of illness,” the CDC said. 

On Sept. 22, the Community First team sent an email detailing the clinic. The memo for the flu shots was sent the day the clinic was starting, catching many students off guard. It read, “The four-day seasonal flu vaccine clinic starts today in Vasey Hall Theatre.” The dates and times listed in the email were as follows: Wednesday, Sept. 22 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 23 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, Sept.24 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Monday, Sept. 27 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

Although it was short notice, many students and staff members made their way over to Vasey during the four-day period to receive this season’s flu vaccine. In addition to the scheduling and location details listed in the email sent from Community First, the cost of the vaccine was also included. The same Community First email stated, “The cost is free for faculty and staff (please still bring your insurance card) as part of the annual seasonal flu program sponsored by the Office of Human Resources. The cost of the vaccine is $28 for students (payment can be made via cash, check or Wildcard) and many health insurance plans are accepted.” 

Many students were surprised to see that there would be a charge for the flu vaccine, as many pharmacies give out the shots for free, and the COVID-19 vaccines were free to recipients nationwide. One student commented on the flu shot coming with a price, saying, “When we as students are asked to get a flu vaccine to protect ourselves and the Villanova community, they are also acting us to pay $28 for something that is free elsewhere and serving the same purpose [of protecting ourselves and other students from illness] as the COVID-19 vaccine which was also free.”

Sophomore Jordan Mastrodomenico detailed her experience getting the flu vaccine. She went to get hers around 1:30 pm on Friday, Sept. 24. She had previously filled out the consent forms necessary for getting the flu shot, having printed them out and filled them out manually before arriving at Vasey Hall Theatre. However, for students and faculty who had not filled the consent forms out previously, they were still able to fill their forms out upon arrival. After giving the pharmacist her filled out paperwork and medical insurance card, Mastrodomenico was asked if she had been feeling sick recently or if she had received any other vaccines recently, both of which she answered no. Jordan then received the shot. The whole process was over within 10 minutes. 

“The process was very easy,” Mastrodomenico said. 

However, she was surprised that she did not have to pay the $28 upon receiving her flu shot. 

“I was surprised about not having to pay because of the email being misleading,” she said.

While short lived, the flu vaccine clinic the University held was a success at vaccinating several community members and protecting some against the imminent flu season.