This Year’s Flu Vaccine: What You Should Know

Information and tips about the flu vaccine to help you avoid getting sick.

This Year

Each year when flu season comes around, questions begin circulating about the flu shot. Below, Beth Thomas, DO, Fairview's chief quality and patient safety officer, answers some of the most common questions we hear. (As always, consult your doctor if you have follow-up questions or questions that aren't addressed here.)

The flu shot is egg-allergy friendly.

In years past, people with egg allergies were advised not to get the flu vaccination because the vaccine contains egg properties. However, like last year, the amount of egg protein in this year's vaccine is so small it is unlikely to cause a reaction, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

It's approved (and recommended) for infants as young as 6 months.

Infants as young as 6 months can get this year's flu vaccine.

It's important to note that some children need two doses of the flu vaccine for it to work properly. Children ages 6 months to 8 years who have received two doses of the flu vaccine any time in the past only need one dose this season. Children who have not received two doses of the flu vaccine in the past should get their flu vaccination close to the beginning of flu season and their second more than 28 days later.

If you have any hesitations or questions, be sure to contact your child's health provider.

It won't give you the flu.

The flu shot cannot give you the flu because it contains an inactive virus.

It's not uncommon to hear, "I got the flu shot and it made me sick." If you feel sick after receiving the flu vaccination, it's likely due to one of three things:

  1. You unfortunately got the flu before the vaccination took full effect, which takes about two weeks. 
  2. You might be experiencing a mild reaction to the vaccination, but the symptoms will not be nearly as severe or long lasting as those you'd experience with the flu. 
  3. You were already coming down with another illness with the same/similar symptoms as the flu that coincidentally worsened after you got the flu shot. 

The FluMist will not be offered at Fairview this year.

Fairview will not offer the FluMist (nasal flu vaccine spray). Last year, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), which is a panel that advises the CDC, voted against use of the nasal spray flu vaccine based on data showing lower effectiveness (compared to the injection vaccination) from 2013 through 2016.

ACIP continues to recommend the annual flu vaccination (i.e., shot).

We’re in this flu season together. Show you care about the health of our community by getting your flu vaccination.

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