It’s not too early to get the flu shot! The flu season can start as early as October, (peaks in January or February) and can last as late as May. CHOC Children’s along with the American Academy of Pediatrics, recommends that all children ages 6 months or older be immunized against influenza as soon as the vaccine is available.
New quadrivalent influenza vaccines for the 2013-2014 season contain the same three strains as the trivalent vaccine, plus an additional B strain. The flu vaccine is especially important for people who are at high risk of complications from flu, including:
• Pregnant women
• People 50 years of age and older
• People of any age with chronic medical conditions
• People who are immunosuppressed
• People who live in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities
• Health care workers
For a complete list, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at: http://www.cdc.gov/Features/FLU/
Also, remind your family to take everyday preventive steps to stop the spread of germs. This includes washing hands often, using hand sanitizer, postponing play dates with sick kids, and wearing appropriate outdoor clothing. If you are sick with the flu, stay home from work or school to prevent spreading influenza to others.
For more information, check out this CHOC article with frequently asked questions:
- A CHOC Children’s pediatrician, answers some of parents’ most common questions about how to prepare your family for flu season.
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