American Family Care, the nation’s leading provider of urgent care, accessible primary care, and occupational medicine, is offering military veterans free flu shots on Veterans Day, which is on Saturday. The announcement is an extension of AFC’s ongoing effort to promote flu prevention in the United States and comes on the heels of the company’s annual ‘National Flu Prevention Week’ campaign.

According to American Family Care, there are 19.4 million veterans in the U.S., among which approximately 750,000 have no insurance coverage. Veterans of the U.S. armed forces tend to be older and have more chronic health problems than the general adult population, which may place them at greater risk of complications from influenza.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has established a vaccination rate of 80 percent as the national goal for seasonal influenza vaccination. However, according to data from the National Center for Veterans Analysis and Statistics, only 49 percent of veterans received a flu vaccination in their recent survey.

Flu outbreaks occur nearly every year, and cost the U.S. economy an estimated $71-167 billion per year in health services use and lost productivity. Influenza-related diseases also cause an estimated 225,000 hospitalizations and 36,000 deaths annually in the U.S., mostly among chronically ill or elderly people.

Veterans interested in obtaining a free flu shot on Saturday are encouraged to visit AmericanFamilyCare.com to find their nearest AFC clinic. There are clinics throughout Fairfield County, including Bridgeport, Fairfield, Shelton, Norwalk, Danbury and Stamford.