Flu Vaccine Awareness: New Jersey Department Of Health · Medical Info · Vaccine Benefits
During the 2018-2019 flu season, New Jersey experienced a lengthy influenza season with widespread activity occurring for 15 weeks between December and April. It resulted in above average increases in outpatient visits and hospitalizations and reports of six flu-associated deaths and 51 severe influenza-associated hospitalizations among children.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends a yearly flu vaccine for everyone 6 months of age and older. Certain people are at greater risk for serious complications from the flu, including: children younger than 5, but especially children younger than 2 years old; adults 65 years of age and older; pregnant women; women up to 2 weeks after end of pregnancy; American Indians and Alaskan Natives, and people who have medical conditions such as asthma, heart disease, and diabetes. Flu vaccination should also be a priority for those individuals who live with or care for individuals at higher risk for influenza-related complications.
“The Department continues to recommend that individuals also take necessary precautions like washing their hands frequently, covering coughs and sneezes, and staying home when sick,” says New Jersey Department of Health acting commissioner Judith Persichilli. “If you do get sick, ask your healthcare provider if antiviral medications are right for you. These medications can shorten the length of time you are sick.”
It is not true that flu vaccines can give you the flu. The virus in the vaccine is not active, and an inactive virus cannot transmit disease. While you may feel the effects of your body mounting an immune response, that is NOT having the flu.