Get the Flu Facts! How to Stay Flu-Free this Winter

Flu season during a pandemic makes flu vaccinations more important than ever. Even during the best of times, flu season is a huge headache for organizations due to increased absences and lost productivity. But flu season in a time of pandemic is expected to raise historical and unprecedented health, productivity and attendance challenges. This is why it is important for employers to do their part to encourage employees to receive a flu shot. Studies show that getting vaccinated can reduce flu illness, doctors’ visits, missed work and school, as well as prevent flu-related hospitalizations. The good news is that unlike COVID-19, the proven-effective flu vaccine is quick, easy, widely available and free. Sounds like an easy sell, right? Well, the bad news is that many people decline to get it, due to circulating myths about the flu vaccine.

With flu season right around the corner, let’s debunk some of the most common myths:

MYTH: The flu vaccine interferes with the body’s ability to fight off COVID-19

FACT: Getting a flu shot won’t increase your risks of catching COVID-19, but getting the flu will


MYTH: You can catch the flu by getting a flu shot

FACT: The flu vaccine does not contain any active virus. The vaccine contains particles of killed viruses, so it cannot cause influenza


MYTH: The vaccine doesn’t work because people still catch the flu after getting the shot

FACT: This can happen but only on rare occasions and usually with much milder symptoms than the person would have experienced had they not received the shot


MYTH: I don’t need a flu shot this year because I got one last year

FACT: Flu vaccinations change all the time to keep up with changes in flu viruses, meaning that last year’s shot won’t necessarily protect you from this year’s viruses; vaccines also wear off during the year and need to be “renewed” by a new shot


MYTH: I don’t need a flu shot because I’m under the age of 65

FACT: While people 65 and older are especially vulnerable, the flu can have serious and fatal effects on persons of any age


MYTH: I don’t need a flu shot because I’m healthy

FACT: While it’s especially important for people with chronic illnesses to get a flu shot, current public health guidelines recommend that anyone older than 6 months of age gets vaccinated even if they’re healthy


MYTH: The flu vaccine has dangerous side effects

FACT: Flu shots are among the safest of any vaccine, with only mild side effects, the most common one being soreness and tenderness at the injection site.


MYTH: Even if I do catch the flu, it’s no big deal

FACT: While far less dangerous than COVID-19, the flu is a severe respiratory infection that kills roughly 3,500 Canadians each year


MYTH: You can’t get the flu if you get a flu shot

FACT: While getting vaccinated helps, there are other things you should do to avoid getting the flu, such as avoiding contact with people who have the flu and washing your hands frequently just as you do to avoid COVID-19.


The flu vaccine is just one way you can improve the health of workers in your workplace. For more information on safety measures, you can take during the pandemic, visit our COVID-19 Resources and Updates page.

Have more questions? Contact a Service Hospitality Advisor – questions, phone calls, and emails are always free!

 

 

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