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Protect yourself with a flu shot

10/25/17

Don’t let the flu take you out for three days to a week or more! Getting a flu shot is an important part of preventive care. Flu season starts in October, peaks between December and February, and can run all the way through May.

What is the flu, and how do people get it?

Influenza is a respiratory disease that is spread mostly from person to person through coughs and sneezes. The flu can spread before any symptoms appear, which means others can give you the flu even before they know they have it. It’s just one more reason to protect yourself with a flu shot and avoid the chills, fever and high temperatures the flu brings!

How does the flu shot protect me?

Each year’s flu vaccine is developed to protect against the strains of the virus that scientists predict will be most common in the upcoming flu season. The yearly flu shot is only good for one flu season, so it’s a good idea to get a flu shot every year. Even in years during which the flu viruses change during the flu season, antibodies from a flu shot are still likely to provide some protection.

Should everyone get the flu vaccine?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  recommends that all people ages 6 months and older be vaccinated against influenza, including pregnant women. Children younger than 9 years old may need two doses during the same flu season. For everyone else, only one dose is needed each flu season. A higher dose vaccine may be recommended for those 65 and older.

Getting vaccinated not only protects you, but also protects the community and your loved ones. Being vaccinated lowers the chance that you will spread the virus, which could be dangerous for young children, older people and those with chronic health conditions. Getting vaccinated to protect others is called “herd immunity.” The herd helps to protect those who cannot get vaccinated.

Where can I get the flu shot?

HealthSelect plans cover the flu vaccine at 100% when you visit an in-network doctor or retail health clinic. Flu shots are also covered at 100% under the HealthSelect Prescription Drug Program at in-network pharmacies where flu shots are offered. 

Check with your Benefits or Wellness Coordinator—there may be a free flu shot clinic at your office.

 


Content reprinted from connect.bcbstx.com.

A Division of Health Care Service Corporation, a Mutual Legal Reserve Company, an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

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