Flu Season 2020-21 Frequently Asked Questions
What is the flu and how is a vaccine decided?
There are many different flu viruses and they are constantly changing. The flu vaccines is reviewed and updated each year. Flu vaccines protect against the three or four viruses that research suggests will be most common.
What are the symptoms of the flu?
Fever or chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffed nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, tiredness, vomiting and diarrhea. Not everyone with flu will have a fever. Vomiting and diarrhea are more common in children than in adults.
What is different between a cold and the flu?
Colds and flu share many symptoms, so it can be difficult to tell the difference based on just symptoms. Fever, aches and chills can accompany the flu but don’t always happen.
What is different between the flu and COVID-19?
Influenza (Flu) and COVID-19 are both contagious respiratory illnesses, but they are caused by different viruses. Some of the symptoms of flu and COVID-19 are similar, so it may be hard to tell the difference between them based on just symptoms.
Can I get Flu and COVID-19 at the same time?
Yes. This makes getting a flu shot much more important this year. Fewer people getting sick with the flu will slow its spread. This will help reduce the burden on our health care system and make sure everyone gets the treatment they need.
Who should get a flu vaccine?
It is recommended for everyone with rare exceptions. It is an effective way to reduce your chances of getting the flu. It also limits your chances of needing hospitalization or dying. At the same time, you’re helping protect everyone around you.
This is even more important during the COVID-19 pandemic. It helps protect everyone around you. Vaccines are highly recommended for these vulnerable groups:
- People with a high risk for a severe COVID-19: Including adults aged 65 years and older and persons of all ages with certain underlying medical conditions. This includes obesity, sickle cell and diabetes.
- Persons with a high risk for severe flu complications: Including infants and young children, pregnant women, and adults aged 65 years and older.
Can I still get the flu after a flu vaccine?
Yes. It’s possible to get sick with flu even if you have been vaccinated. This is possible for the following reasons:
- You may be exposed before getting vaccinated or while the body is gaining protection from the vaccination. Antibodies that protect against the flu develop about 2 weeks after vaccination.
- You may be exposed to a flu virus that is not included in the seasonal flu vaccine. A flu vaccine is made to protect against the three or four flu viruses that research suggests will be most common.
The flu vaccine is not a perfect product, but it is the best way to protect against flu infection. And even if you get the flu after the vaccine, studies have shown it’s still helpful. It can cut the time you’re sick and the severity of your illness.
When should I get a flu vaccine?
It’s recommended you get the flu vaccine in the fall, but it will still be effective if you get it in the winter. The earlier you get it, the more time your body has to develop resistance.
Will a flu vaccine increase my chance of getting COVID-19?
There is no evidence that getting a flu vaccination increases your risk of getting COVID-19.
Will a flu vaccine protect against COVID-19
Getting a flu vaccine will not protect against COVID-19, but it has many other benefits. Flu vaccines have been shown to reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalization and death.
Why should I get a flu vaccine?
Because of all the answers above. The vaccine protects more than just you. It helps everyone around you. If you’re protected, it’s harder for the flu to spread to people around you.