MARYLAND (WDVM) — According to the Centers for Disease Control, the United States has seen record low numbers of flu cases during the COVID-19 pandemic. But with the risk of the Delta variant and the start of flu season on the horizon, health experts are warning people to get their flu shot before it’s too late.
CVS MinuteClinics across the state of Maryland will begin offering flu shots as the start of the flu season grows closer.
The CDC recommends getting your flu shot before the end of October as it could take up to two weeks for your body to develop antibodies to fight the flu.
There are flu vaccines available to children as young as 6 months old and are approved for pregnant women as well as those with other underlying health conditions.
Amy Macdonald is a family nurse practitioner at the CVS MinuteClinic and warns that forgoing the flu vaccine could result in serious repercussions.
“If you don’t get your flu vaccine, then potentially you could risk hospitalization and we’re still in the middle of a pandemic, so resources are very limited right,” Macdonald said. “So if you don’t get your flu shot and you get very sick, you could end up in the hospital during the COVID pandemic, and you’re utilizing those resources.”
Macdonald is also reminding patients that are similarities between flu symptoms and COVID symptoms, which could create confusion and stress when addressing and treating the illness.
The CDC has also confirmed that the flu vaccine and the approved COVID-19 vaccines can be administered on the same day.