Your best defense against influenza (flu) is to get vaccinated. Across the country, hundreds of millions of people have gotten the flu vaccine safely for decades.
It’s an effective way to keep you, your family and your community from getting sick.
Why get vaccinated?
In the U.S., 5% to 20% of people get the flu every year. The misery of having the flu lasts for days and some symptoms can last for weeks.
The flu also weakens your immune system, leading to secondary infections that can be fatal. Secondary infections are especially life-threatening to older adults and people with chronic health conditions.
The flu vaccine helps protect you from getting influenza and lessens the severity of your symptoms if you do get sick.
Which vaccines do you need? View the adult immunization schedule.
COVID-19 and the flu
The flu and COVID-19 are alike in many ways – both are highly contagious respiratory diseases and cause similar symptoms.
COVID-19 spreads faster than the flu and can cause more serious illnesses. It also takes longer for COVID-19 symptoms to appear and the illness lasts longer.
If you have flu or COVID-19 symptoms, you’ll need to get tested to know which one you have. The symptoms are so similar that a diagnosis can’t be made on symptoms alone. It is possible to get COVID-19 and the flu at the same time. While we don’t know for sure, a coinfection will likely have more severe symptoms.
Vaccines drastically decrease your chances of contracting COVID-19 and the flu. You can help stop the spread of these diseases by getting vaccinated.
Because the safety and well-being of our residents, clients and team members are our top priorities, the Good Samaritan Society requires COVID-19 and flu vaccinations for all of our staff members.
Where can I get vaccinated?
We’re here to help residents and clients protect themselves. Nurses at our long-term care locations can administer the vaccines on-site so residents can get flu and COVID-19 protection without leaving the building. The flu vaccine is available from September through May.
Residents can also call their local clinic to schedule a vaccination appointment or go to a pharmacy or walk-in clinic. Some health systems offer convenient drive-up flu shot clinics, which usually don’t require an appointment.