(July 2020) Depending on the year, receiving a flu vaccination will reduce the risk of getting the flu by 40% to 60%. Chief of pediatric infectious disease at University of Utah and Primary Children’s Hospital, Dr. Andrew Pavia said it best, “Getting a flu shot is a lot like wearing a seat belt.” It is a known preventative measure that can save your life or at least reduce the severity if you get sick.
With the current Covid-19 pandemic it will be crucial for everyone 6 months and older to get a flu shot.
The United States Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimated there were 410,000 to 740,000 hospitalizations for last year’s flu season alone. To date, there have been over 249,000 Covid-19 hospitalizations with many hospitals reaching capacity and running low on supplies during peak outbreaks. Just imagine if we had a flu outbreak on top of these numbers. It will be even more important for people to get a flu shot to prevent flu-related medical visits & hospitalizations to reduce the burden on the healthcare system and conserve resources.
Experts are also anticipating an increased desire for people to receive their flu shot this year. Fortunately, flu vaccine manufacturers and our pharmacies are preparing for the increased demand. All flu vaccine manufacturers are increasing their production by about 10 to 20% to ensure there will be enough vaccines to meet this year’s demand. Our pharmacies are currently working to plan more flu clinics and develop strategies to vaccinate as many people as possible while following the CDC’s recommendations for prevention of Covid-19 transmission (e.g., handwashing, mask wearing, social distancing).