Get vaccinated and take steps to reduce infection and transmission
As the battle against COVID-19 continues, it has never been more important to take precautions against another potential threat to your immune system—the flu. Flu season in California is October through May, but typically peaks from December through February.
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) recommends the annual flu vaccination for everyone 6 months and older.
“In the midst of a COVID-19 pandemic, a severe flu season could be devastating for California,” said state Public Health Officer and CDPH Director Dr. Tomás J. Aragón in a news release. “Getting the flu shot is a safe and simple thing we can all do to keep people out of the hospital and reduce the strain on our health care system.”
Getting vaccinated against the flu is particularly important for people at high risk of severe disease and hospitalization, including:
- People age 65 and older.
- People who smoke or have underlying medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, asthma, lung disease, neurologic disorders, and weakened immune systems.
- Pregnant women and children under 5.
- Caregivers and residents in long-term-care facilities.
- Essential workers who encounter others outside their homes or at higher risk because of their occupation.
In addition to getting immunized, you can also take simple, everyday preventative measures to stop the spread of germs and reduce your risk of contracting the flu:
- Continue to wear a mask.
- Stay away from people who are sick and stay home when you or other family members are sick for at least 24 hours after symptoms go away before you are around others.
- Cough or sneeze into your elbow, arm, or disposable tissue; use hand sanitizer or wash your hands afterward.
- Wash hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and warm water or use and alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
For your best chance to ward off the flu, visit the CDPH website and contact your local health care provider, physician, or clinic about getting the flu vaccine. Adults can also get immunized at the pharmacy where they normally pick up prescriptions. To check the status of a California health professional’s license, visit https://search.dca.ca.gov.
This week is National Influenza Vaccination Week. Both #COVID19 and #flu can cause severe illness and complications, especially for high-risk groups. In addition to wearing masks, getting the flu and COVID-19 vaccines are simple ways to protect yourself and your family. pic.twitter.com/j8X0iWAMm1
— CA Public Health (@CAPublicHealth) December 6, 2021