Summer is over and, in some parts of the country, the leaves soon will be changing color. The coming of Fall also brings about Flu Season. Getting an annual flu vaccine is the first and best way to protect yourself and your family from the flu. Flu vaccination can reduce flu illnesses, doctor’s visits, and missed work and school due to flu, as well as prevent flu related hospitalizations.
New Things for the 2017-2018 Season:
- The recommendation to not use the nasal spray flu vaccine (LAIV) was renewed for the 2017-2018 season. Only injectable flu shots are recommended for use again this season.
- Flu vaccines have been updated to better match circulating viruses (the influenza A (H1N1) component was updated).
- Pregnant women may receive only licenses, recommended, age-appropriate vaccine.
When should you get vaccinated:
- You should get a flu vaccine before flu begins spreading in your community. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body that protect against flu.
- CDC (Center for Disease Control) recommends that people get a flu vaccine by the end of October.
Information for Healthcare Professionals:
- CDC, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), and the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC) recommend that all US healthcare workers get vaccinated annually against influenza.
- The findings of a recent CDC review of related published literature indicate that influenza vaccination of healthcare personnel can enhance patient safety.
- Some employers require certain immunizations. Hospitals, for example, may require some staff to get the flu vaccine or take precautions such as the use of masks.
- Check with your facility for specific flu vaccination requirements. You will need to comply with at least one of the following:
- Show proof that you have received a seasonal flu vaccination for the 2017-2018 season.
- Document declination of the 2017-2018 seasonal influenza vaccination.
- If you decline the seasonal flu vaccination, you may be required to wear a mask when working in close proximity to patients or in designated areas.
www.cdc.gov/flu/about/season/flu-season-2017-2018.htr (updated March 2017)