The 2020-2021 flu season is already underway and one of the most important things a person can do to protect themselves and others from the Influenza (flu) this season is to receive the flu vaccine.
In the midst of COVID-19, individuals and families are urged to get vaccinated as it is likely that the flu virus will spread alongside COVID-19 this fall. Though the flu vaccine will not prevent COVID-19 it will reduce flu illnesses, flu-related hospitalizations and deaths, as well as conserve medical resources for the care of people with COVID-19.
What is the flu?
The flu is a contagious respiratory illness that can cause mild to severe infection in the nose, throat, and lungs.
How long is the flu season?
According to the CDC, the flu season typically starts in the fall, October, and can last as late as May. While influenza viruses circulate year-round, most of the time flu activity peaks between December and February, but activity can last as late as May. Getting a flu vaccination as early as possible is important, as protection usually begins 7-10 days after administration.
Who should get the flu shot?
Flu shots are recommended for everyone over the age of 6 months, regardless of whether they are healthy or have risks, and no one should go unprotected from the flu. The very young, pregnant women, elderly, and those with certain underlying health problems are at higher risk to have serious flu-related complications.
How many people get the flu yearly?
It is estimated that the flu results in 31.4 million outpatient visits and more than 200,000 hospitalizations. During the 2017-18 flu season, one of the longest and most severe in recent years, estimates indicate that more than 900,000 people were hospitalized, and more than 80,000 people died from the flu.
Where can you get the flu shot?
DHD#10, doctor’s offices, and pharmacies are easy-to-access options for flu shots. There are many flu vaccine options available, and residents should speak with a healthcare provider about which flu vaccine is best for them.
Children and adults who lack insurance may be eligible for programs available at DHD#10 and many provider offices. No one should go unprotected from the flu.
Please call 888-217-3904, option #2 to discuss your options or to schedule an appointment at your local DHD#10 office.