November 14, 2019

It’s more convenient than ever to get a flu shot


WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Getting a flu shot is quick, easy and convenient.

In other words, there are no good excuses for not getting vaccinated, says Libby Richards, an associate professor of nursing who specializes in public health at Purdue University’s School of Nursing.

Large employers – especially health care systems and school districts – have traditionally offered influenza vaccines to their employees for free or at a low cost. Physicians' offices and local health departments also are traditional places to get a yearly shot.

“Many people say they are just too busy to get a flu shot. In reality, you can get a flu shot at many of the places you normally visit such as major grocery stores and pharmacy chains,” Richards says.

Richards also points out there is still time to get a flu shot, as December is the time when flu starts increasing across the country. Having more Americans receive their vaccination helps reduce the severity of flu outbreaks.

“Getting the flu shot protects you and your family from getting sick. It also protects your community by reducing the chance the virus can spread,” she says.

The CDC has even revised recommendations for people who have egg allergies so they can receive a flu shot under medical supervision. Persons with certain allergies or medical conditions should talk to their physician about receiving a flu shot or not.

Richards also suggests that anyone due for other vaccinations get those at the same time they get their flu shot.

“Since the influenza vaccine contains an inactive virus, it can be given with other vaccines, such as shingles, pneumonia or DTAP, which immunizes against tetanus and pertussis,” Richards says.

Influenza updates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show the U.S. still has overall low activity, but several states are seeing increasing flu activity. 

Writer: Matthew Oates, 765-496-2571, oatesw@purdue.edu, @mo_oates 

Source: Libby Richards, 765-494-1392, erichards@purdue.edu, @LibbyAnnR1

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