Flu vaccine is widely available in Onondaga County
This fall, please remember to get your flu vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older receive an annual flu vaccine. Everyone should be vaccinated yearly because immunity to flu viruses declines over time and circulating flu strains often change from year to year.
The return to in-person work and school and the less restrictive masking mandates compared to last flu season may result in an increase in flu activity during the 2021-2022 flu season.
Onondaga County Health Commissioner, Dr. Indu Gupta, explained, “Getting vaccinated against seasonal flu not only decreases your risk of catching the flu, but also decreases the severity of flu illness and lessens the risk of overwhelming hospitals which are coping with ongoing COVID-19 cases.” Gupta continued, “Everyone should get the flu vaccine to protect themselves, their family, and their community.”
Dr. Gupta further emphasized that the flu vaccine is especially important for those at high risk for complications from severe flu such as:
- All children younger than 5 years old, especially those younger than 2 years old
- Adults 65 years and older
- People who are pregnant (and up to 2 weeks postpartum)
- People of any age with chronic medical conditions such as asthma, heart disease, and diabetes
- People with a weakened immune system due to disease or medications
- People younger than 19 years old on long-term aspirin-or salicylate-containing medications
- People who live in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities
- People from certain racial and ethnic minority groups including non-Hispanic Black persons, Hispanic or Latino persons, and American Indian or Alaska Native persons
- People who are obese with a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher
- Those who live with or care for those who are at high risk for complications including:
- Health care workers
- Household contacts of persons who are ≤ 5 years of age and adults ≥ 65 years of age
- Household contacts and caregivers of persons with a medical condition that put them at high risk for complications
In addition to getting vaccinated, staying home when you are sick, wearing your face mask, staying socially distanced from others, and practicing good hand hygiene and cough etiquette throughout the season will reduce your chance of getting or spreading the flu.
Talk to your health care provider today about getting your flu vaccine or find a flu vaccine at a pharmacy near you! If you do not have health insurance and need a flu vaccine, call the Onondaga County Health Department at 315.435.2000.
To learn more about the flu, visit https://www.cdc.gov/flu/.