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Flu Vaccination Does NOT Increase Risk of COVID-19

Posted on October 13, 2020
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This year, depending on which one you get, the annual flu vaccine will protect against three or four types of flu viruses. It does not contain the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which is the novel coronavirus commonly referred to as “COVID-19”. Potential COVID-19 vaccines are still being tested and are not yet available.

False Claims

There have been claims that getting the flu vaccine can increase your risk of becoming sick with COVID-19. The initial report came from a 2020 study. The CDC says this study incorrectly stated that flu vaccination increases the risk of coronaviruses. It’s important to note that there are many types of coronaviruses, including the common cold and COVID-19. This study looked at flu vaccination and coronaviruses other than COVID-19, but it was still incorrect. Flu vaccination does not increase the risk of getting COVID-19 or other coronaviruses like the common cold.

credit: CDC

Why get vaccinated against flu if it won’t protect against COVID-19?

Getting a flu vaccine this season may not provide protection against COVID-19, but it can lessen the burden of the pandemic on healthcare systems. Since both flu and COVID-19 can land people in the hospital, if fewer people are in the hospital with flu, there will be more time and energy for treating COVID-19. Both viruses also require ventilators and medications that hospitals could run out of if both viruses are spreading at the same time.

Can I get flu and COVID-19 at the same time?

Yes, it is possible to get both flu and COVID-19 at the same time. Another benefit to getting an annual flu vaccine during the pandemic is to help prevent getting one of two viruses that will spread this fall and winter. Having one of these illnesses can make you more susceptible to getting the other. Experts recommend getting vaccinated as the best defense against flu, which could help prevent you from also getting sick with COVID-19.






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