Everyone can be a flu vaccine advocate!Posted on by
With the holidays quickly approaching, there will be more opportunities to spend time with family and friends. Now is the time to ensure that you and those around you are protected from flu. Now is the time to get your seasonal flu vaccine if you haven’t already gotten it. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies that protect against flu to develop in the body.—so it’s important to get vaccinated now, before the flu begins circulating in your community.
Whether you are a doctor, school nurse, grandchild, best friend, or coworker, you can play a role in reminding and encouraging other people to get their flu vaccine. Get your flu shot and talk to others about the importance of everyone 6 months and older getting a flu shot every year.
Talking to Friends and Family about Flu Shots
Need some tips for talking about the importance of flu vaccine? CDC is a great source of information about the serious risk of flu illness and the benefits of flu vaccination, as well as information to correct myths about the flu vaccine. Below are several examples of the benefits of flu shots and corrections of common flu myths. Find out more about the benefits of getting your annual flu vaccine on CDC’s Vaccine Benefits webpage, here.
- Flu can be a serious illness, even for otherwise healthy children and adults. While most people will recover from flu without complications, anyone can experience severe illness, hospitalization, or death. Therefore, getting vaccinated is a safer choice than risking serious illness for yourself or those around you.
- The flu vaccine CANNOT give you the flu. Flu shots do NOT contain flu viruses that could infect you and cause flu illness. Flu shots either contain flu vaccines viruses that have been “inactivated” (or killed) and therefore are not infectious, or they do not contain any flu vaccine viruses at all (recombinant influenza vaccine).
- Flu vaccination can keep you from getting sick with flu. Flu vaccines can reduce your risk of illness, hospitalization.
- Getting vaccinated yourself may also help protect people around you, including those who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, like babies and children, older people, and people with certain chronic health conditions.
Making a Flu Vaccine Recommendation to Your Patients
For health care providers, CDC suggests using the SHARE method to make a strong vaccine recommendation and to provide important information to help patients make informed decisions about vaccinations. Remind patients that it is not too late for them to get vaccinated, and follow the SHARE strategies below:
- S- SHARE the reasons why the influenza vaccine is right for the patient given his or her age, health status, lifestyle, occupation, or other risk factors.
- H- HIGHLIGHT positive experiences with influenza vaccines (personal or in your practice), as appropriate, to reinforce the benefits and strengthen confidence in flu vaccination.
- A- ADDRESS patient questions and any concerns about the influenza vaccine, including side effects, safety, and vaccine effectiveness in plain and understandable language.
- R- REMIND patients that influenza vaccines protect them and their loves ones from serious flu illness and flu-related complications.
- E- EXPLAIN the potential costs of getting the flu, including serious health effects, time lost (such as missing work or family obligations), and financial costs.
Be an advocate for flu vaccination. Get your flu vaccine and remind those around you to do the same! Visit www.cdc.gov/flu for more information and tips on flu vaccination and prevention.
Interested in learning more about flu? Check out other CDC Flu Blog-a-thon post throughout the week for personal stories, advice, and tips on flu and flu prevention. You can see all the participating blogs here: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/toolkit/blog-a-thon.htm.
7 comments on “Everyone can be a flu vaccine advocate!”
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Vaccines are to risky for me.
My wife and her peers at the hospital got flu shots that burned and hurt for several days. I got one from a pharmacy and never had a reaction like that?? Any thoughts on this. I believe in flu shots for myself they work.
I get flu shot in august haven’t gotten the flu or even a bad cold for years.
Thanks! This really helped me learn more about the flu shot and why people do or don’t receive it.
As the blogger discussed, the Center for Disease Control is a great resource for individuals seeking further information and statistics on influenza and how to prevent it. The Center for Disease Control (2017) informs, “The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and sometimes the lungs. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death (Center for Disease Control, 2017). Some key signs and symptoms of the flu are but not limited to nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fevers, cough, sore throat, fatigue, head and body aches, and nasal congestion. It is important that patients know flu can spread through droplets meaning if an infected person coughs, sneezes, or even talks it can be spread to another. Particularly young children, older adults, and pregnant woman are more susceptible for contacting the flu. The best-known way for preventing the flu is to obtain a yearly flu vaccination, which assists in fighting off most strands of the flu. Other ways may include appropriate and frequent hand washing and staying away from individuals who are sick or have been sick recently. Overall, a great information blog here. Thank you.
What are ingredients in the flu vaccine? What ingredients that ” boost the immune system?”
There are two vaccines available that help to create a stronger immune response to vaccination, both approved for people 65 years and older. Here is more information on the high-dose vaccine (https://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/vaccine/qa_fluzone.htm) and the adjuvanted vaccine (https://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/vaccine/adjuvant.htm). For a full list of ingredients for each type of flu vaccine, visit https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/appendices/B/excipient-table-2.pdf.
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