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Q: Should I get a flu shot this year?

Yes. It’s always a good idea to protect yourself against the flu, and that’s especially true while we are still in the COVID-19 pandemic.

First, it’s good to remember that influenza is also a serious, contagious disease. Long before we heard of COVID, some people were hospitalized each year with severe illness from the flu. Influenza is especially dangerous for people with weakened immune systems, including older people and babies, some of whom are too young to get vaccinated. So by getting a flu shot, you can help protect yourself and your loved ones from a nasty illness and potential complications.

You’re also doing your part to help reduce the potential burden on hospitals and healthcare providers during the pandemic. Remember that symptoms of the flu can appear similar to COVID, including fever, chills, aches, and cough. So even if you’d normally just rest and recover from a bout with the flu at home, you might be more likely to seek medical care this year if you think you may have COVID-19.

The flu shot is safe, and studies have shown it’s ok to get it at the same time as your COVID vaccine. So don’t hesitate to protect yourself and your loved ones from the flu this year.

At this time Maui Health does not offer flu shots to the general public but they are widely available at doctors’ offices and most pharmacies across the island. Stay safe and happy holidays!

Chrissy Miller
Employee Health Manager, Maui Health