5 Good Reasons to Get a Flu Vaccine This Season

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Flu vaccine: We all have a role in protecting each other.

The National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW) is a national awareness week focused on highlighting the importance of influenza vaccination.

As flu viruses and the virus that causes COVID-19 can spread this season, getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever. Here are five reasons why you should:

1. Helps Keep You Healthy

Flu can cause signs and symptoms; such as fever, cough, and body aches, that can keep a healthy person home from work, school, and errands for a few days to a week or more.

The best way to prevent seasonal flu is to get vaccinated every year. Flu vaccination helps prevent millions of illnesses and flu-related doctor visits each year. CDC estimates that influenza vaccination during the 2019–2020 influenza season prevented 7.52 million illnesses, 3.69 million medical visits, 105,000 hospitalizations, and 6,300 deaths associated with influenza.(1)(3)

2. Beat the Bug

Flu vaccination can reduce doctor visits due to flu. Several studies have shown flu vaccination can reduce the severity of illness in people who get vaccinated but still get sick. And during seasons when the flu vaccine viruses are similar to circulating flu viruses, flu vaccine was shown to reduce the risk of having to go to the doctor with flu by 40% to 60%.(2)

3. Care for Each Other

You may think of flu vaccine only as a way to protect yourself from flu. But getting vaccinated also may protect the people around you. Many people in the U.S. are at higher risk of getting very sick from flu because of their age, or because they have one or more of certain health conditions, like asthma, diabetes, or heart disease. Also, some people in your family or community may not be able to get vaccinated due to their age (children younger than 6 months, for example).(4) They rely on you to help prevent the spread of disease. When you get a flu shot, you help protect them.

Help CDC promote flu vaccination in conversations with friends, family, and neighbors, and post to followers on social media using resources available in this year’s #SleeveUp to #FightFlu digital media toolkit.

4. Help the Health Care System

Getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever during the 2020-2021 season. A flu vaccine this season can help protect you and the people around you from flu, reduce the burden of flu on our health care systems during the COVID-19 pandemic, and save medical resources for the care of COVID-19 patients.

Since health care workers are needed to care for people sick with COVID-19 and may care for or live with people at high risk for influenza-related complications, it is especially important for them to get vaccinated.(5)

5. It’s Not Too Late

National Influenza Vaccination Week (December 6-12) is focused on highlighting the importance of influenza vaccination. It’s not too late for anyone 6 months and older to get a flu vaccine. Laboratory-confirmed flu activity is low now, according to the Weekly U.S. Influenza Surveillance Report (or FluView).

CDC has worked with vaccine manufacturers to have extra flu vaccine available this flu season. Manufacturers have distributed 197.4 million doses of flu vaccine this season so far. Use the VaccineFinder to find yours.

Resources

References

  1. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/business/promoting-vaccines-workplace.htm
  2. https://wwwdev.cdc.gov/flu/prevent/vaccine-benefits.htm
  3. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/burden-averted/2019-2020.htm
  4. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/prevent/vaccinations.htm
  5. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/healthcareworkers.htm

Thanks in advance for your questions and comments on this Public Health Matters post. Please note that the CDC does not give personal medical advice. If you are concerned you have a disease or condition, talk to your doctor.

Have a question for CDC? CDC-INFO (http://www.cdc.gov/cdc-info/index.html) offers live agents by phone and email to help you find the latest, reliable, and science-based health information on more than 750 health topics.

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8 comments on “5 Good Reasons to Get a Flu Vaccine This Season”

Comments listed below are posted by individuals not associated with CDC, unless otherwise stated. These comments do not represent the official views of CDC, and CDC does not guarantee that any information posted by individuals on this site is correct, and disclaims any liability for any loss or damage resulting from reliance on any such information. Read more about our comment policy ».

    Getting a flu vaccine is very important especially when the flu season starts and now it cannot be skipped because of the healthcare crisis. Taking care of health, avoiding cold, fever, infections as much as possible should be considered. Thanks for sharing!

    Hello,
    I totally agree with this blog, as the current Covid-19 situation there is no vaccine for the covid-19 so to minimize the risk on you and your loved ones.

    As a nurse it is more important than ever to get a flu shot. A big part of patient teaching at discharge is aimed toward teaching patients ways to keep them and their families safe. This can simply be done by getting the influenza vaccination. Vaccines safe lives! Knowing this information it is important to spread to word to everyone the importance of the influenza vaccination and how vaccines prevent the burden of flu illnesses.

    I agree that anyone that is healthy and able to get the Flu Vaccine absolutely should! The statistics that support the benefit outweighing the risk are significant and anyone that thinks they should not should take the time to review these statistics. The elderly population is at the highest risk for obtaining the flu and although death is rare debility is not and if it can be prevented it should. Unlike COVID-19’s vaccine the flu vaccine has supportive evidence and data that shows it works and it has been around for sometime now. I am a nurse and have worked in healthcare for some time now and I have seen the Flu completely take the breath out of some people in addition to increasing the risk of other similar disease like pneumonia. We all are entitled to our own healthcare decisions, however, just take care of your body and don’t put it in harms way if you don’t have to.

    The influenza vaccine is very important for lower the morbidity and mortality of the disease. influenza and pneumonia are the eight leading cause of death in the united states. The highest influenza rates are among young children and people over 65 years of age (Clark, 2015). This is why it is imperative that we get vaccinated.

    Clark, M.J. (2015). Population and Community Health Nursing. (6th ed.) Pearson.

    As a nurse, I think that with the current pandemic situation, it is more important than ever to get a flu shot. Not only does the vaccine protect yourself and others from the flu, but also helps protect the healthcare system. Getting vaccinated for the flu helps reduce burden on the healthcare field and can help decrease the number of cases of the flu being mistaken for COVID-19, as well as saving resources for those who really need it. Education to patients of the importance of flu vaccination is incredibly important to protect the health of our community.

    My son just tested positive 4 days ago and fever keeps returning…he’s a 40 and diabetic so I worry…. I know it’s too soon but how long does the fevers come and go

    I would like to know why you cannot schedule a Covid test online unless you have a symptom I made an appointment for myself at CVS then try to make one for my husband and it told me he could not have an appointment he has no symptoms what if he is
    Positive With no symptoms and he gave it to me (if I do test positive) & what if he is positive with no symptoms how many people will catch Covid? I’m not saying I am positive or my husband is positive I’m just stating a fact about an issue I came across today it’s so frustrating ,maybe if it was a little bit more easier to get tested more people would get tested Yes he could go to his doctor But he’s just taking a chance of getting sick by being in a doctors office or maybe you cannot take any time off work during business hours. I really hope they fix this situation soon

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Page last reviewed: December 22, 2020
Page last updated: December 22, 2020