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FLU MYTHS

Protecting our Community is

WORTH A SHOT!

Getting vaccinated against preventable diseases is the best way to protect ourselves and our community, especially because some of the most vulnerable often are not eligible for many vaccines. Let us help you protect your friends, family, and neighbors by getting your vaccines up to date. We are proud to offer vaccines at all of our pharmacy locations. All locations regularly stock influenza (seasonally), shingles, pneumonia, and Tdap; most have COVID-19 primary and booster vaccines, though the manufacturer and age group differs. To check what your nearest location has, visit their page!

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Influenza (the Flu)

You have the power to protect yourself and the ones you love from influenza. Make sure your whole family gets their annual flu vaccine to help them fight off the flu bug.

The CDC recommends flu vaccination for everyone 6 months and older. We all know someone who is at risk of developing serious flu related complications. Pregnant women, young children, older people, and those with certain chronic medical conditions all have the highest risk.

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COVID-19

We're all ready to get back to normal, and the best way to do that is by making sure you and all of your loved ones are vaccinated against COVID-19.

Bivalent booster vaccines are now available to anyone 5 years or older who has finished their primary series. As of December 9, 2022, children 6 months to 5 years of age who received the Moderna vaccine are eligible for a bivalent booster dose; children 6 months to 4 years of age who have received 2 or fewer doses of the Pfizer vaccine series will receive the bivalent vaccine as their third dose.

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Pneumonia

Two new vaccines are available to prevent pneumonia, Vaxneuvance 15 and Prevnar 20. If you have never received a pneumonia vaccine, we recommend the NEW single-dose Prevnar 20. If you have previously received a pneumonia vaccine, please ask our team if you are eligible for an additional vaccine.

The pneumonia vaccine is available year-round to those eligible. The CDC recommends that you get vaccinated against pneumonia if you are 65 or older OR are 19-64 years and have certain medical conditions or risk factors, including:

  • Diabetes

  • Heart, Liver, or Lung Disease

  • Asthma

  • COPD

  • Alcoholism

  • Cigarette Smoking

  • Sickle Cell Disease

  • Cochlear Implant

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Shingles

Don’t let the painful, blistering rash of shingles hold you back from doing what you love. The 2-dose Shingrix shingles vaccine is 90% effective in preventing shingles.

The CDC recommends the vaccine for healthy adults 50 and older, including those who have had shingles, received Zostavax, or are not sure if they had chickenpox.

 

Medicare now covers Shingles vaccinations at no charge!

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Tdap

Tdap vaccines offer protection from three viruses in one shot: tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (whooping cough). Tetanus enters the body through open wounds and causes painful muscle stiffening. Diphtheria spreads from person to person and can cause difficulty breathing, heart failure, and paralysis. Pertussis also spreads from person to person and causes violent coughing, to the point it is difficult to eat, drink, or breathe. All three can be deadly; whooping cough is especially dangerous to babies and small children.

The CDC recommends that adolescents get a single dose of Tdap at 11 or 12 years of age ideally; pregnant women should also get a dose of Tdap during every pregnancy (preferably during the third trimester) so the protection from the vaccine passes to the newborn.

 

Adults should also get a booster dose of either Tdap or Td (no pertussis protection) every 10 years. With some injuries, it may be recommended to receive a booster dose sooner.

Who should get vaccinated?

EVERYONE!

But some are at higher risk of serious complications than others.

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older couple enjoying coffee outside

Seniors

Older adults are more likely to contract viruses like the flu and to have serious complications.

 

There are many different vaccines specifically for seniors, including shingles (50+), pneumonia (65+) and the High Dose flu vaccine. Talk to our team for information on the different available vaccines — we can help you stay up to date on your shots!

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Children

Older adults are more likely to contract viruses like the flu and to have serious complications.

 

There are many different vaccines specifically for seniors, including shingles (50+), pneumonia (65+) and the High Dose flu vaccine. Talk to our team for information on the different available vaccines — we can help you stay up to date on your shots!

senior woman with asthma inhaler

Those with Chronic Conditions

Many chronic conditions impact the immune system, which means that those living with chronic diseases have a higher risk of catching a virus if they come across it.

Talk to your doctor or our team to see if you qualify for various vaccines. Some vaccines, like pneumonia, are recommended at younger ages for people living with several chronic conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, and asthma.

Ready to Get your Shot?

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Will the flu shot give me the flu?

NO

The flu shot cannot give you the flu because the vaccine is a solution of an inactivated virus. The vaccine helps you develop immunity to the flu by imitating an infection.

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Is the flu shot safe to get if I am pregnant?

YES

Getting the flu shot is safe during all trimesters of the pregnancy and can pass antibodies along to the baby while protecting the mother. These antibodies can continue to protect the baby several months after birth.

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Do I need a flu shot this year if I got one last flu season?

YES

Health experts recommend getting a flu shot every year. The vaccine is developed specifically for the virus strains predicted to circulate during the upcoming flu season, not the past ones.

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Should I still get a flu shot if I never get sick?

YES

The flu shot doesn’t just protect you from getting the flu — it also protects those around you. Not everyone has a strong enough immune system to receive the flu shot, such as the very old or young.

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Should I wait to get my shot until there are more cases?

NO

Your body needs about two weeks after you get the flu shot to make the antibodies that will protect you against the flu. Get your flu vaccine so you are covered before flu viruses begin to circulate — not after.

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Am I more likely to get Alzheimer's Disease if I get a flu shot?

NO

Recent studies have indicated that flu and pneumonia vaccines may actually protect people from Alzheimer’s, possibly contributing to the protection of memory, cognition, and overall brain health.

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Will two flu shots give me more protection?

NO

In adults, studies have not shown a benefit from getting more than one dose during the same influenza season. Except for children getting vaccinated for the first time, only one dose is recommended each season.

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Will antibiotics help me treat the flu?

NO

Antibiotics are only needed for treating certain infections caused by bacteria. Viral illnesses, including influenza, cannot be treated with antibiotics; taking antibiotics can cause both minor and major side effects.

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