We are currently on the brink of the most critical flu season we have experienced in a long time. While the current dangers of COVID-19 are still apparent and the threats of a second wave loom, getting a Flu shot is your best way to control what you can control and prevent compound illness. Over the years there have been myths about the flu shot that have kept people from getting the vaccine and now, more than ever, it’s important to make an educated decision about the flu shot, unhindered by opinion based information. Here are a few misconceptions to look out for.
Contrary to popular opinion the flu shot does not give you the flu. Flu viruses that are used in flu shots are inactivated, which means it is impossible for the shot to cause infection. Some will say that it’s not the needle injection but the nasal spray that can give you the flu, which is also untrue. Though the nasal spray contains live flu viruses, they are weakened to a point where they cannot cause infection.
Another strong misconception is that it’s better to get sick with the flu than to get vaccinated. This is completely untrue in that the Flu is a very serious disease especially among young children, older adults and those with chronic health conditions like asthma, heart disease or diabetes. The flu can cause serious complications and lead to hospitalization or even death. Therefore, getting the flu shot is undoubtedly a safer option than to risk getting the flu itself.
Finally, some who do get the flu shot believe that it isn’t necessary to get the flu shot every year, also untrue. A person’s immune protection from vaccination declines over time which means that a new vaccine needs to be injected every year for best protection from the disease. The flu is also ever changing from year to year so a previous year’s vaccine will not prevent a new year’s flu, nor will having had the flu strengthen your immune system to be able to prevent it on its own.
Hamilton Community Health Network is committed to seeing as many patients vaccinated as possible and has made getting the flu shot very accessible for patients and the general public. Hamilton’s medical clinics are offering flu shots by appointment during regular business hours, and curbside services which are no appointment necessary on selected days.
Those days are:
- Monday 10 – 3 – Hamilton Main Clinic
- Wednesday 10 – 3 Hamilton Clio Clinic
- Friday 10 – 3 – Hamilton Lapeer Clinic
- Wednesday 5 – 7 PM rotating between clinics
These are all NO-Cost clinics, meaning we will not charge anyone but will ask those who have insurance to help cover the costs and allow us to continue to provide no-cost flu vaccine clinics in our community. For more information or to schedule an appointment call 810.406.4246 or go online to hamiltonchn.org.