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5 reasons why you need a flu vaccine this year

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COVID-19 is continuing to take our country by storm. And, starting this fall, we’ll face a second tried-and-true health hurdle: the flu. Here are five reasons why you need a flu vaccine this year.

 1.     The seasonal flu and COVID-19 are spreading together

According to the CDC, “it’s likely that flu viruses and the virus that causes COVID-19 will both be spreading. In this context, getting a flu vaccine will be more important than ever.”

2.     Pandemic + flu = trouble

In July, Robert Redfield, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, warned in a YouTube address to the Journal of the American Medical Association: “The fall and winter of 2020 and 2021 are going to be probably one of the most difficult times that we’ve experienced in American public health.”

3.     Flu vaccinations save lives

Flu vaccines protect people — in fact, they prevent millions of illnesses and save thousands of lives each year. Per the CDC: “During 2017-2018, flu vaccination prevented an estimated 6.2 million influenza illnesses, 3.2 million influenza-associated medical visits, 91,000 influenza-associated hospitalizations and 5,700 influenza-associated deaths.”

4.     Health care providers need your help

It’s impossible to follow COVID-19 news without being aware of the challenges health care providers have experienced with high patient capacity and scarce personal protective equipment. The CDC reports, “Getting a flu vaccine this fall will be more important than ever, not only to reduce your risk from flu but also to help conserve potentially scarce health care resources… During the COVID-19 pandemic, reducing the overall burden of respiratory illnesses is important to protect vulnerable populations at risk for severe illness, the health care system and other critical infrastructure.”

5.     Anyone can catch — and be severely sickened by — the flu

Don’t count on your age or a clean bill of health to carry you through flu season. UC Irvine Health reports that “although some people are at greater risk of getting sick — including the elderly, pregnant women and those with medical conditions — anyone can get sick, including healthy, active individuals.” 

Want to learn more about how to protect yourself from the seasonal flu? Visit the CDC website.


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