Get Your Free Flu Shot With Medicare
Flu season is here!
Influenza activity starts ramping up in October and November, but the peak of the flu actually hits between December and March.
Did you know that according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 130 million doses of flu vaccine have been distributed so far this season?
That means that now is the perfect time to get your flu shot.
If you didn’t know, Medicare offers a free flu shot. So, as long as you’re enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B, you can go get your one free flu shot for the year.
The doctor or healthcare provider you see must accept Medicare. If you aren’t sure, call the provider and ask.
Medicare also advises that the flu virus changes from year to year, so it’s really important that you continue to get your flu shot.
Even if you got one last year, it’s in your best interest to hop on over to your health care provider and get your annual flu shot renewal.
And if you’re not so sure about that flu shot, here are all of the benefits that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cite:
- Flu vaccination can keep you from getting sick with flu.
- Flu vaccination can reduce the risk of flu-associated hospitalization, including among children and older adults.
- Flu vaccination is an important preventive tool for people with chronic health conditions.
- Flu vaccination has been associated with lower rates of some cardiac (heart) events among people with heart disease, especially among those who experienced a cardiac event in the past year.
- Flu vaccination also has been associated with reduced hospitalizations among people with diabetes (79%) and chronic lung disease (52%).
- Vaccination helps protect women during and after pregnancy. Getting vaccinated can also protect a baby after birth from flu. (Mom passes antibodies onto the developing baby during her pregnancy.)
- A study that looked at flu vaccine effectiveness in pregnant women found that vaccination reduced the risk of flu-associated acute respiratory infection by about one half.
- There are studies that show that flu vaccine in a pregnant woman can reduce the risk of flu illness in her baby by up to half. This protective benefit was observed for several months after birth.
- And a 2017 study was the first of its kind to show that flu vaccination can significantly reduce a child’s risk of dying from influenza.
- Flu vaccination also may make your illness milder if you do get sick. (For example, a 2017 study showed that flu vaccination reduced deaths, intensive care unit (ICU) admissions, ICU length of stay, and overall duration of hospitalization among hospitalized flu patients.)
- Getting vaccinated yourself also protects people around you, including those who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, like babies and young children, older people, and people with certain chronic health conditions.
There you have it! Take advantage of your free flu shot this year!
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