Are you ready for flu season?

It’s that time! Flu season is slowly starting to make its way into our lives again, and it’s important to protect not only yourself but others every year. I never miss the opportunity to get the flu shot because I don’t want to give it to my children or anyone else susceptible that might not be as capable of battling the virus as I am. Get it for your neighbor, your coworkers (please!), and maybe your mother-in-law, even if she’s not your favorite person.

One significant change for this season is that people with egg allergies may get any vaccine (egg-based or non-egg-based). While, in the past, people with a severe allergy to eggs had to be vaccinated in a medical setting and monitored closely, these additional safety measures are no longer recommended for flu vaccines in that population.

The best time to get your flu shot is in September/October. You can go to any local pharmacy for this; insurance usually pays 100% of the cost. There are a lot of clinics that give flu shots at a significantly discounted price for those uninsured. It’s still a little too soon to be able to predict the severity of this flu season. Some reports suggest it’ll be an earlier season this year, so it’s best to get vaccinated sooner rather than later. Make sure you do everything you can to protect yourself, like proper hand washing, staying home if you feel sick, and avoiding large crowds. Please let your supervisor know if you test positive in case you were in close contact with other employees.

Thank you for doing your part to keep yourselves and others healthy this season!

–Amy Merriman, PIH Corporate Medical Director