New Yorkers Urged to Get Flu Shots as Experts Warn “Twindemic” With COVID-19 Remains Too Prevalent
Influenza vaccines are safe, fast, and available at no out-of-pocket cost to patients who get vaccinated at one of the NYC Health + Hospitals locations.
New Yorkers can call 888-NYC-4NYC to make an appointment or go here for hours of operation at various NYC Health + Hospital locations.
October 25, 2022
NYC Health + Hospitals urges all New Yorkers to get a flu shot as health experts warn of a possible “twin demic” this fall and winter season with COVID-19 still circulating. The flu is a serious, highly contagious and sometimes deadly disease, and the severity of each season is unpredictable, so annual vaccination is the best defense against the disease. The state Health Department has already classified flu activity statewide as “widespread.” The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone older than six months get a flu shot, especially people in increased risk. Studies Show Flu Vaccine reduces risk of disease between 40 and 60 percent among the general population. Flu shots are available at NYC Health + Hospital sites in all five boroughs at no cost. New Yorkers can call 888-NYC-4NYC to make an appointment or go here to walk in hours.
“We have seen that this year’s flu season in the southern hemisphere, which immediately precedes flu season in the northern hemisphere and thus serves as a barometer for our flu season, came earlier and was stronger this year. year,” he said Machelle Allen, MD, Medical Director of NYC Health + Hospitals. “This, coupled with reduced mask wearing, means our flu season could be more severe this year, making it more important than ever to get a flu shot.”
“This fall and winter we will have flu and COVID-19 co-circulation, and co-infection is possible, which can lead to severe symptoms and hospitalizations. The best defense against both viruses is to get vaccinated,” he said. Syra Madad, DHSc, MSc, MCP, Senior Director, Systemwide Special Pathogens Program at NYC Health + Hospitals. “You can get both vaccines at the same time. Common side effect that some may experience may include temporary discomfort at the injection site in the upper arm.”
Why is it so important to get a flu shot this year?
- The flu vaccine has been updated since last year.
- It is possible to get sick from both the flu and COVID-19. Influenza vaccines will not prevent COVID-19, but they will reduce your risk of seasonal influenza infection and its potentially serious complications.
- Flu shots prevent millions of flu-related illnesses and doctor visits each year. During 2019-2020, influenza vaccination prevented approximately 7.5 million influenza illnesses, 3.7 million influenza-associated medical visits, 105,000 influenza-associated hospitalizations, and 6,300 influenza-associated deaths.
- Influenza vaccination can reduce the risk of hospitalizations associated with influenza.
- Influenza vaccination during pregnancy helps protect pregnant women from influenza during and after pregnancy and helps protect their babies from influenza in their first months of life.
- Getting vaccinated can also protect the people around you, including those who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, such as infants and young children, the elderly, and people with certain chronic health conditions.
New Yorkers can call 844-NYC-4NYC to schedule their flu shot at a nearby NYC Health + Hospitals location. Check here for a list of available walk-ins. Read the health system facts in the fight against the flu.
Contact: 212-788-3339; PressOffice@nychhc.org
About NYC Health + Hospitals
NYC Health + Hospitals is the nation’s largest municipal health care system serving more than one million New Yorkers annually at more than 70 patient care locations in the city’s five boroughs. A strong network of neighborhood-based outpatient primary and specialty care centers anchors care coordination with trauma centers, nursing homes, post-acute care facilities, home care agency and MetroPlus Health Plan of the system, all supported by 11 essential hospitals. Its diverse workforce of more than 43,000 employees is solely focused on empowering New Yorkers, without exception, to live the healthiest life possible. For more information visit www.nychealthandhospitals.org and stay connected on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/NYCHealthandHospitals or Twitter at @NYCHealthSystem.