As summer comes to an end, Flu season is out there looming in the distance. But since we are in the middle of a coronavirus pandemic, is it safe to get a flu shot this year?
In short, yes. But there are a few precautions.
Per the New York Post, “Doctors say getting the shot is safe so long as people follow protocols to prevent exposure to the coronavirus while they’re out getting it.”
Dr. Martine Hackett, a public health professor at Hofstra University, explains saying, “The precautions people should take to get their flu shot are the same precautions when you run other essential errands. When you go out, make sure you’re wearing a mask and make sure you’re able to social distance.”
The outlet also addresses other questions related to getting a flu shot:
One frequently asked question is: can a flu vaccine can lower your immune system and make you more vulnerable to COVID-19? Experts say no. “The immune system is being stimulated to make antibodies, so it’s a very different response.” They also debunk the myth that you can get the flu from the flu vaccine. “A few people — about 1 percent — get a fever. That’s not the flu, that’s the body working already on the vaccine.”
Another question addressed is what happened if someone with coronavirus gets a flu shot. Experts say, “There’s no evidence that someone who unknowingly has the virus when they get the flu shot will end up with a worse COVID-19 case.” They add that the shot may actually help ward off the coronavirus. “If anything, there’s a theory out that other vaccines might actually provide a stimulus of your immune system, and it might be better off to fight off the virus.”
The last question addressed is whether everyone should get a flu shot. Doctors point out, “Everyone above the age of six months should get the flu vaccine, including people who are older than 65, are pregnant or have underlying illnesses.”
They lastly stress that people getting flu shots will help so that healthcare systems aren’t overwhelmed during flu season, especially when at that time there might be a second wave of coronavirus.