Is It Safe To Get Covid And Flu Shots At The Same Time
The CDC has confirmed it’s safe to get a flu shot and COVID vaccination in the same sitting.
And don’t worry about more serious side effects with a four-part flu vaccine: Whether the shot uses three components or four, the typical side effects should be the same, Chin-Hong, the UCSF doctor, said. Those include redness or swelling at the injection site, muscle ache, mild fever, headache and nausea, all of which should clear up after a few days.
Want more? We’ve debunked nine myths about the flu shot and explain how to tell if you have the flu, COVID or a common cold.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.
Why The Flu Was Defeated But Not Covid
How could mask-wearing and distancing bring the flu to a halt, while Covid-19 rages on?
It goes back to something scientists were saying at the beginning of the pandemic: Covid-19 is way, way worse than the seasonal flu because its more contagious.
Scientists describe the contagiousness of a disease with a figure called R0 . The number describes, on average, how many new cases each case of a disease goes on to generate. For the seasonal flu, the R0 is between 1 and 2. For Covid-19, its more likely between 2 and 3, if not a little higher.
Our collective actions have brought the effective R number for Covid-19 down to a little more than 1. As long as the R number is greater than 1, the virus will keep spreading. But, when it comes to the flu, all that collective action has indeed brought the effective R for the flu below 1.
To Kissler, this is textbook epidemiology: Anything that is less contagious , but that spreads in a similar way, is going to be brought well below that R threshold of 1, and its just going to be wiped out.
We can feel good that our efforts wiped out the flu. Its one less burden to deal with during an already difficult year. But there are some optimistic takeaways for the future, too. Lets say theres another pandemic respiratory virus, but its a little less contagious than Covid-19. If we were to bring the same force of collective action to contain the new virus as now, that pandemic would likely be halted.
Dr Anthony Fauci On The Biggest Challenges Facing The Biden Administration
Although the U.S. continues to struggle with COVID-19, it has apparently beaten the flu into submission. Since the end of September, the combined total of positive flu cases identified by both public health and clinical labs is fewer than 1,500. There are high schools with more people in them. The phenomenon is not only in the United States worldwide, rates of influenza are nearly off-the-charts low. When you line multiple years up on the same graph, it can even look like there are no cases of flu this year. Thats how out of step we are with the norm.
Prior to 2016, the CDC combined test results from clinical and public-health data, and from 2016-2021, it broke the results down by source. We calculated the overall share that tested positive for the flu from 2016-2021.
That data is mind-blowing, especially because many observers spent the fall worried about a twindemic. The minuscule flu season also raises a few questions: How can there be so many cases of one respiratory illness and so few of another? Why isnt there always a tidy match between the places with the least COVID-19 and the places with the least flu, or vice versa? And, seriously, are the flu numbers really that low?
The answers are complex, even though this teeny-tiny flu season is a simple fact.
Our strategies are working on COVID-19, as well. Just not as dramatically, because it was more likely to spread to more people to begin with.
Don’t Miss: Best Time Of Day To Get A Flu Shot
What About The Flu Vaccine
Professor Barr said there has also been a reduction in flu vaccination uptake this year, with just 33.3 per cent of Australians getting the jab.
However, about 80 per cent of those over 65 are vaccinated.
The low number of cases has made developing new vaccines difficult.
“Let’s just say it’s been tricky,” Professor Barr said.
“Normally we have a very good influx on samples from not just Australia, but New Zealand and other surrounding countries so we’ve been scratching around for samples in the last 18 months.
“It’s an interesting time, because we’ve never seen the virus under this sort of pressure before.”
Exceptional Fossil Preservation Suggests That Discovering Dinosaur Dna May Not Be Impossible
Data on the overall pattern of outpatient visits dont support this conclusion, however. For instance, even during the Covid-19 spike of November-December 2020, outpatient visits remained stable. If anything, there was a small reduction in outpatient visits overall during the 2020-2021 flu season. So, even if we cant precisely quantify how % ILI in 2020-2021 compared with previous years, it is reasonable to conclude that it is much lower.
Another way to measure the amount of flu activity is to look at influenza-related mortality. Only a very small percentage of influenza illnesses result in death , but these are closely tracked through the National Center for Health Statistics Mortality Surveillance System.
The following plot shows all pneumonia, influenza, and Covid-19 mortality from 2017 to the present. The most striking pattern, of course, is the three waves of Covid-19 in 2020. More subtly, but important for our purposes, is the virtual disappearance of influenza deaths in 2020 .
Pneumonia, influenza, and Covid-19 mortality from 2017-2021
Pediatric deaths from influenza in the US, 2017-2021.
Recommended Reading: Tylenol Cold And Flu Severe Vs Dayquil
Florida Influenza Surveillance Reports
Tallahassee, FL 32399
Historical reports are available dating back to the 2001-02 influenza season.
The flu season typically runs from October to May. To better contextualize the data presented in these reports, we have grouped them by season rather than calendar year.
Florida Influenza Surveillance Reports
Make a selection below to view previous Florida Flu Reviews for that season.
2020 – 2021 Weekly Florida Flu Reviews
2019 – 2020 Weekly Flu Reviews
2018 – 2019 Weekly Flu Reviews
2017 – 2018 Weekly Flu Reviews
2016 – 2017 Weekly Flu Reviews
2012 – 2013 Weekly Flu Reviews
2011 – 2012 Weekly Flu Reviews
2010 – 2011 Weekly Flu Reviews
2009 – 2010 Weekly Flu Reviews
2008 – 2009 Weekly Flu Reviews
2007 – 2008 Weekly Flu Reviews
2006 – 2007 Weekly Flu Reviews
2005 – 2006 Weekly Flu Reviews
2004 – 2005 Weekly Flu Reviews
2003 – 2004 Weekly Flu Reviews
2002 – 2003 Weekly Flu Reviews
No Flu Reviews available for this reporting year.
2001 – 2002 Weekly Flu Reviews
New Weekly Flu Cases In The United States
It is a bad time for the flu to re-emerge, as the Omicron variant causes a surge in coronavirus cases and with travel expected to increase over the holidays.
We have seen how surges in Covid-19 infections can overwhelm hospitals, and influenza infections could further stress health care systems, said Sonja Olsen, an epidemiologist at the C.D.C. If both viruses continue to circulate and increase in activity, the situation could get worse.
The agency considers several factors when assessing influenza activity, including the number of overall patients who report respiratory illnesses, the number of long-term care facilities with at least one case of the flu, the share of flu tests that come back positive and the number of flu patients admitted to hospitals. In recent weeks, all of these indicators have gone up.
Since early September, the share of flu tests that have come back positive has risen to 3.5 percent from 0.05 percent. That positive rate is still below the prepandemic average, which may mean that there has been less flu in circulation in recent weeks than what was typical in recent years, Dr. Olsen said.
Recommended Reading: Kaiser Permanente Flu Shot 2021 Southern California
Testing And Treatment Of Respiratory Illness When Sars
While waiting on results of testing, sick non-hospitalized persons with respiratory symptoms should self-isolate at home. Even if people test negative for both viruses, they should self-isolate because of the potential for false negative testing results depending upon what kind of test was done and the level of SARS-CoV-2 and influenza transmission in the community. Persons not hospitalized but who are at high-risk for complications from influenza should get antiviral treatment for influenza as soon as possible.
For hospitalized patients, empiric oseltamivir treatment for suspected influenza should be started as soon as possible regardless of illness duration, without waiting for influenza testing results. Get more information on testing and treatment when SARS-CoV-2 and influenza viruses are co-circulating.
CDC has developed clinical algorithms that can help guide decisions for influenza testing and treatment when SARS-CoV-2 and influenza viruses are co-circulating.
Influenza antiviral medications have no activity against SARS-CoV-2 viruses, nor do they interact with medications used for treatment of COVID-19 patients. If a patient who is at high risk for serious influenza complications is diagnosed with SARS-CoV-2 and influenza virus co-infection, they should receive influenza antiviral treatment.
Weekly Us Influenza Surveillance Report
Note: CDC is tracking the COVID-19 pandemic in a weekly publication called COVID Data Tracker Weekly Review.
All data are preliminary and may change as more reports are received.
A description of the CDC influenza surveillance system, including methodology and detailed descriptions of each data component is available on the surveillance methods page.
Additional information on the current and previous influenza seasons for each surveillance component are available on FluView Interactive.
Seasonal influenza activity in the United States is increasing, including indicators that track hospitalizations. The amount of activity varies by region.
Recommended Reading: How Much Do Flu Shots At Cvs Cost
What Information Do States Report
The CDC tracks LIL activity levels in each state and presents a weekly flu surveillance report. LIL activity levels are defined as the following:
- Very High
State health departments track flu data provided by hospitals, clinics, clinical laboratories, and healthcare organizations. These reports can include information like the number of flu tests conducted, positivity rates, and the number of flu-like illnesses that providers saw in the patients they treated.
How Effective Is This Year’s Flu Vaccine
Vaccine-makers monitor which flu strains are currently circulating and forecast which are most likely to become the dominant ones during the upcoming flu season. They use that data to produce the yearly flu vaccine, using three or sometimes four of the likeliest strains.
The effectiveness of the flu vaccine fluctuates greatly from year to year — as low as 19% efficacy in the 2014-2015 season to as high as 60% in 2010-2011.
Last year, when about half of US adults and children got a flu shot, the vaccine was 39% effective in preventing infection, according to the CDC. Due to an effective vaccine and COVID-19 mitigation measures, the number of reported flu cases during the 2020-2021 season was so low it almost seems like a typo: only 2,038 cases of flu, compared to 38 million cases reported in the 2019-2020 season.
Because of the unbelievably mild flu season last year, vaccine-makers had less information to use to develop this year’s vaccine. They created a vaccine containing four likely variants, known as a quadrivalent flu vaccine, to increase the chances of nailing the dominant strain this year.
“There was enough data to make a good educated guess,” L.J. Tan, chief strategy officer for the Immunization Action Coalition, said in October. Back then, Tan said experts were confident “we got it right.”
You May Like: Can You Get Prevnar And Flu Shot Together
Covid And The Flu: Can You Get Both At The Same Time
Influenza infections have increased at the same time that the omicron variant causes a fourth COVID wave, sparking “flurona” concerns.
A co-infection of COVID and the flu can be difficult to detect without testing.
After a 2020-2021 flu season that saw an unprecedented decline in yearly cases, influenza cases have rebounded in 2021-22, spawning concerns of a COVID-19 and flu “twindemic.” The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 1,804 people were hospitalized with influenza for the week ending Jan. 8. That’s almost as many as who were infected in the entire 2020-2021 flu season.
One difference this year is that the current flu vaccine seems to be a poor match for the dominant strain of influenza. “From our lab-based studies it looks like a major mismatch,” Scott Hensley, a microbiologist at the University of Pennsylvania, told CNN.
Get the CNET How To newsletter
A less effective flu vaccine, combined with a lifting of lockdowns and mask mandates, could push 2021-2022 back to a more typical flu season, according to the CDC, with millions of Americans catching the flu and tens of thousands dying from it.
What’s worse than catching the flu? An co-infection of both flu and COVID-19 at the same time. Health care professionals around the world have started reporting cases of patients contracting COVID-19 and influenza simultaneously, a phenomenon dubbed “flurona” that can bring additional risks to those with underlying health issues.