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CDC changes a few things as far as guidance for flu vaccines

WPMI Mobile 9/13/2022 Lisa Librenjak
© Provided by WPMI Mobile

If you're wondering when to get your flu shot this year, health officials say the answer is now.

The Centers For Disease Control also changed a few things as far as guidance for this year's flu season. One of those being that there are three flu vaccines that are preferentially recommended for people 65 years and older.

Most people only need one dose, according to health officials. Getting the vaccine in September and October is the recommended time to get it, the CDC stated.

"Historically, flu season peaks in January," Alabama Dept. of Public Health Dr. Wes Stubblefield said. 

Stubblefield said sometimes it can start as early as September. 

"For most individuals, it's one dose. For children less than nine years of age who have never received a flu shot, it's two doses, and that's mainly because the immune system needs a little extra help," Stubblefield said. 

For people 65 and up, the CDC is recommending one dose, from any of these three vaccines: 

"If those vaccines are not available, any that are approved for their age group is fine, but preferentially they receive one of those three," Stubblefield said. 

Babies six months and up can get the flu vaccine, according to the CDC. Before, it used to be two years and up.

"MCHD has the flu vaccine and anyone in the community that doesn't have a medical home or isn't able to get a flu vaccine from their normal provider, we're more than happy to come into our clinics, you can make an appointment by calling 251-690-8889," Mobile County Health Dept. Dr. Rendi Murphree said. "We really don't know what to expect, the last normal flu season was back in 2018-2019, so every flu season since then has looked different since in the face of Covid."

But officials know that in the winter, there's always an increase in respiratory illnesses.

"The most common symptoms with flu include things like fever, cough, and muscle aches," Stubblefield said. "Now, people can also experience headaches and congestion, but those are the big ones."

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