Should You Get the Flu Shot Early This Year?


As fall approaches, doctors and experts are already thinking about flu season.

While there is no way to predict the future, health officials are concerned that the overlap of flu and coronavirus cases could cause problems, reported Today. 

"The biggest concern is that we have seasonal increases in the flu from December or November through March, and at that time, many hospitals go into surge crisis (mode)," Dr. Albert Ko, a professor of epidemiology and medicine at the Yale School of Public Health, said.

Dr. Ko shared that beds are already filled with flu patients, which will be a concern for many COVID-19 patients already in hospitals.

When should people get the flu shot?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that September and October are the best months to get your flu shot. Dr. Tania Elliott, a clinical instructor of medicine and immunology at NYU Langone Health in New York, agreed.

“There is little value in getting the flu shot earlier than this, because the flu shot effectiveness will wane over time, meaning you won’t be protected later in the season,” she added.

Who should get the flu shot?

Experts say most people should get vaccinated, unless their doctor tells them not to.

Young children who are under six months old and those with medical conditions should not receive the vaccination.

Why is it so important to get the flu shot this year?

Justin Lessler, Ph.D., an associate professor of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, said getting the shot can help limit the amount of trips people have to make to the doctor’s office.

"If the flu is sending a lot of people to health care facilities, then that's increasing their risk of catching coronavirus," he said.

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