Why should healthy people get flu shots?
Think you’re too healthy to worry about getting a flu shot? Get one anyway.
Many people avoid flu shots, even when employers and retail outlets are offering them this time of year for free or at a low cost, because they do not believe they need them. But getting vaccinated not only may protect yourself, it protects others – especially babies and older people who are most vulnerable to the virus.
“What people don’t realize is deciding not to get a flu shot contributes to spreading the flu virus to others,” said Dr. Zachary Simoni, senior lecturer of sociology at The University of Texas at Dallas. He said if a majority of the population is vaccinated, it lessens everyone’s chance of exposure to the disease in what is known as the “herd immunity.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that most people get annual flu vaccinations, with rare exceptions for people with certain health conditions. The 2017-2018 flu season was one of the most severe in recent years, with high levels of outpatient clinic and emergency room visits for influenza, according to the CDC.