Why Do I Need a Flu Shot?
 Who Needs a Flu Shot?
 Where Can I Get a Flu Shot?
 CDC: Influenza Vaccine  Information Statement
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Who Needs a Flu Shot?

Experts who study contagious diseases state that anyone who wants to avoid getting influenza should get vaccinated. However, certain people are more at risk for serious complications if they get influenza, because some complications can lead to hospitalization or death.

To avoid serious complications, experts state that the following groups of people should get immunized against influenza:

Age Groups
  • Healthy children 6 through 23 months of age (vaccination is recommended)
  • Everyone 50 years of age or older
  • Anyone who is a household contact/caregiver of any of the above age groups, including those who are household contacts/caregivers of children who are newborn through 23 months old.

    Medical Conditions
  • Anyone who has :
      - Asthma/anemia and other blood disorders
    - Heart disease/kidney disease
    - Lung disease/metabolic disease, such as diabetes
    - Women who will be pregnant during influenza season
  • Anyone who is a household contact or caregiver of any person with high-risk conditions
  • Anyone whose immune system is weakened because of :
      - HIV/AIDS or other diseases that affect the immune system
    - Treatment with drugs such as long-term steroids
    - Cancer treatment with radiation or drugs
  • Anyone 6 months through 18 years of age on long-term aspirin treatment (who could develop Reye’s syndrome if he or she got influenza)

    Others At Risk
  • Residents of long-term care facilities housing persons with chronic conditions
  • Physicians, nurses, household contacts, and caregivers of anyone who has any of the medical conditions listed above

    Others Who Should Consider Influenza Vaccination Include
  • Anyone who is in contact with those who, because of age or medical condition, are at risk (see Medical Conditions)
  • People who provide essential community services
  • Travelers to the southern hemisphere between April and September, or those traveling to the tropics any time of the year
  • Students and staff at schools and colleges (to prevent outbreaks)
  • Anyone who wants to reduce the likelihood of getting influenza

    For a complete list of CDC recommendations, please visit or speak to your pharmacist.

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