Why should people get vaccinated against the flu?
Influenza is a serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death. Every flu season is different, and influenza infection can affect people differently, but millions of people get the flu every year, hundreds of thousands of people are hospitalized and thousands or tens of thousands of people die from flu-related causes every year. Even healthy people can get very sick from the flu and spread it to others.
How do flu vaccines work?
Flu vaccines cause antibodies to develop in the body about two weeks after vaccination. These antibodies provide protection against infection with the viruses that are in the vaccine.
The seasonal flu vaccine protects against the influenza viruses that research indicates will be most common during the upcoming season.
Who should get vaccinated?
• Children aged 6 months through 4 years (59 months);
• People aged 50 years and older;*
• People with chronic pulmonary (including asthma), cardiovascular (except hypertension), renal, hepatic, neurologic, hematologic, or metabolic disorders (including diabetes mellitus);
• People who are immunosuppressed (including immunosuppression caused by medications or by Human Immunodeficiency Virus);
• Women who are or will be pregnant during the influenza season and women up to two weeks after delivery;
• People who are residents of nursing homes and other chronic-care facilities;
• People with extreme obesity (body-mass index [BMI] is 40 or greater);
• Health care personnel;
• Household contacts and caregivers of children younger than 5 years and adults aged 50 years and older, with particular emphasis on vaccinating contacts of children aged younger than 6 months; and
• Household contacts and caregivers of people with medical conditions that put them at higher risk for severe complications from influenza
Who Should Not Be Vaccinated?
• Children younger than 6 months are too young to get a flu shot.
• People with severe, life-threatening allergies to flu vaccine or any ingredient in the vaccine. This might include gelatin, antibiotics, or other ingredients
Who should talk to their doctor before taking the Vaccine?
• People who are allergic to eggs or any of the ingredients in the vaccine.
• If you ever had Guillain-Barré Syndrome (a severe paralysing illness, also called GBS). Some people with a history of GBS should not get this vaccine. Talk to your doctor about your GBS history.
• If you are not feeling well, talk to your doctor about your symptoms.
When should I get vaccinated?
You should get a flu vaccine now if you haven’t gotten one already this season, it’s best to get vaccinated before flu begins spreading in your community. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body that protects against flu and vaccination should continue to be offered throughout the flu season.
Where can I get a flu vaccine?
Flu vaccines are offered in many locations, including doctor’s rooms, clinics, health departments, pharmacies and university health centers, as well as by many employers, and even in some schools.
Information provided by CDC - Centre for disease control and management