BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Who is the flu shot for? When is the optimal time to get the flu shot? How does the flu shot work in preventing sickness?

Kim Hernandez, lead epidemiologist with Kern Public Health answered these questions and more about this year’s flu vaccine during an interview on 17 News at Sunrise.

The shot, which is recommended for anyone aged 6 months or above, is recommended to be taken at the end of October to effectively prevent from flu sickness, ahead of when it usually reaches full swing from around late December to February.

Although everyone is recommended to take the vaccine, Hernandez explained that it is particularly important for those with health concerns that could worsen the impact of the flu, such as diabetes, heart conditions, pregnancy or those above 65 years old.

Hernandez also noted that is important to remember that the flu does claim the lives of Kern residents every year, and that even if someone is not particularly vulnerable to the flu, the more people who get vaccinated against it, the less it will spread to those who could be at risk.

Upcoming and ongoing flu vaccination events can be found at or through Kern County Public Health.