During this flu season, flu shots for St. Cloud VA Veterans are available at most scheduled VA appointments, at convenient walk-in and drive-thru flu shot clinics, and through the VA Community Care Network.
The 2021-2022 flu season will again coincide with the COVID-19 pandemic. Flu shots provide the best protection against influenza and help reduce illness and hospitalization. An annual flu shot is an important part of staying healthy and is more important than ever during this combined flu season and COVID-19 pandemic.
VA flu shot clinics are for enrolled Veterans only and shots are free. Walk-in or drive-thru flu clinics do not require an appointment. Flu-shot only appointments cannot be scheduled.
Veterans who get a flu shot outside of VA or the VA’s Community Care Network are asked to inform their care team.
COVID-19 Vaccines and Flu vaccines
- For safety reasons, walk-in or drive-thru flu shot clinics do not offer COVID-19 vaccinations.
- Enrolled Veterans can request a COVID-19 vaccine for themselves and their spouse or caregiver as part of other scheduled appointments. Enrolled Veterans can get a flu shot at the same visit.
Flu shots for Veterans at a scheduled VA appointment
- Social distancing and the continuing need to minimize traffic in health care facilities play an important role in the flu shot effort.
- Veterans can get a flu shot as part of most appointments. Some services, like imaging, lab, and others, do not administer flu shots.
- Flu-shot only appointments are not offered.
- Flu shots are for enrolled Veterans only.
Flu shots for Veterans without a VA appointment
- Veterans without an upcoming appointment can use walk-in and drive-thru flu clinics.
- Veterans at walk-in and drive-thru clinics will undergo screening for vaccine allergies and COVID-19 symptoms. Veterans should prescreen themselves for COVID-19 by using VA’s COVID-19 screening tool, available https://www.va.gov/covid19screen/. Those with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 will be directed to other treatment locations.
- Safety and weather related postponements or suspensions of drive-thru clinic locations will be announced at https://va.gov/st-cloud-health-care/ and at https://www.facebook.com/stcloudvahcs.
- Veterans using walk-in and drive-thru flu clinics should wear a mask, have their Veterans Health Identification Card (VHIC) ready, wear a short sleeve shirt, follow signage, and if using a drive-thru clinic to stay in their vehicle.
Walk-in flu shot clinics are available at these locations and times:
St. Cloud VA Medical Center, Bldg. 96:
- Tues., Oct 5, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
- Thurs., Oct. 7, Noon to 4 p.m.
- Sat., Oct. 9, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
- Tues., Oct. 12, Noon to 4 p.m.
- Thurs., Oct. 14, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
VFW Post 936, 1102 3rd Avenue East, Alexandria:
- Fri., Sept. 24, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
- Fri., Oct. 15, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Montevideo VA Clinic, 1025 N. 13th St., Montevideo:
- Mon., Sept. 27, from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
- Mon., Oct. 4, from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Drive-thru flu shot clinics are available at these locations and times:
St. Cloud Municipal Athletic Complex (MAC) Parking Lot, 5001 Veterans Drive, St. Cloud (next door/west of the VAMC):
- Tues., Sept. 28
- Wed., Sept. 29
- Thurs., Sept. 30
- Veterans with a last name starting with A – K are asked to use the drive-thru clinic from 8 a.m. – Noon; and those with a last name starting with L – Z are asked to use the drive-thru clinic between 12:30 to 4:30 p.m.
Brainerd VA Clinic Parking Lot, 722 NW 7th St., Brainerd (enter via Essentia Health Sports Center parking lot at corner of NW 5th St and Jackson St.):
- Wed., Sept. 22
- Thurs., Sept. 23
- Veterans with a last name starting with A – K are asked to use the drive-thru clinic from 10 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.; and those with a last name starting with L – Z are asked to use the drive-thru clinic between 12:30 to 3 p.m.
Flu Shots Also Available through VA’s Community Care Network
Eligible Veterans can receive free flu shots at more than 69,000 Community Care Network (CCN) retail pharmacies and urgent care locations.
Veterans can use the VA Locator to find a VA facility, in-network retail pharmacy or urgent care location near them by visiting: https://www.va.gov/find-locations.
Veterans should call ahead to make sure the flu shot is available at the location of their choosing. Veterans can find in-network locations in their area by entering:
- City, state, or postal code: Enter the appropriate ZIP code for your area
- Facility Type: Select "Urgent Care" OR "Community pharmacies (in VA’s network)"
- Service Type: If "Urgent Care" is selected for Facility Type, choose "Community urgent care
providers (in VA’s network)"
Veterans using the CCN should tell the in-network community care staff they are an eligible Veteran enrolled with VA, and show a government-issued identification (e.g., Veterans Health Identification Card or driver’s license).
Stand-alone flu shot visits to in-network community urgent care providers are copay free and are not counted as an urgent care visit. Other vaccinations are not available through the CCN.
VA is committed to keeping Veteran patients healthy, and vaccination is the best way to prevent the spread of flu.