5 Reasons to Get a Flu Shot

Healthcare workers can provide a safer environment for patients!

Fall is a fun time to prepare for the cooler weather and the upcoming holidays. But while you’re busy celebrating and enjoying fall activities, it’s essential to prepare for the season by getting the flu shot. Each year, thousands of Americans, especially healthcare workers, are susceptible to the illness. October through March are peak months for catching the flu.

The flu, or influenza, is a contagious viral illness that affects the respiratory system and can cause severe cold-like symptoms such as a headache, cough, a high temperature, aches, and a runny nose. Healthcare workers need to stay healthy and fit to take care of patients and themselves during the months when more admissions occur due to the epidemic.

Each year, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), and the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC) strongly advises that healthcare workers and general members of the public get the flu shot to decrease their chances of infection. If you offer direct care to others, you’re at a higher-risk of getting sick and then spreading it to other patients. The best thing to do is keep yourself and your workplace healthy!

Here are five reasons why you should get the flu shot this fall season, especially if you’re a healthcare worker.

1. You’re better safe than sorry

The flu can cause severe symptoms including sinus and ear infections, a fever, and sore throat. If it gets more severe, the flu can develop into bouts of dehydration, pneumonia, or sinus and ear infections. The flu can also be fatal in severe cases. Avoid hospitalization and take care of yourself! Reduce the risk of severe illness by getting the flu shot. Remember that getting the flu shot doesn’t mean you’re immune to the flu or 100% protected. However, it will significantly decrease the chances of you catching the contagious disease, so you can help keep you and your patients healthy!

2. Healthcare facilities require a flu vaccination

If you’re a healthcare worker or intern, then you may already know that most healthcare facilities will expect you to get a flu shot. Many healthcare facilities want to help ensure the safety and health of their patients and the workplace. As a healthcare worker, your duty is to help provide a health-friendly environment and avoid epidemics. You don’t want to catch the flu and then be responsible for spreading it to others, especially high-risk patients. You and your healthcare facility can represent proper and integral patient care if you get the flu shot.

3. You can’t get the flu from the shot

A common modern myth is that you can actually catch the flu from the flu shot. It’s a fact that you can’t catch the flu from the flu shot. The vaccination include a dead version of the virus, so it can’t harm you. You may experience cold-like symptoms a few days after you get the flu shot including a runny nose, sinus congestion, or a sore throat. Don’t worry, these are just some side effects of the vaccination that will go away.

4. Getting a flu shot is convenient

It’s easy to get a flu shot and now it’s more convenient than ever before! Many consumer pharmacies like CVS or Walgreens offer the flu shot during walk-in hours. That means that you can go in and shop for necessities and then walk out with a higher protection from the flu. Why not get your flu shot the next time you run for errands? If you prefer to get it from your regular doctor, just call and make an appointment at a convenient time.

5. Help sustain a healthy environment

Patients rely on healthcare workers to maintain a healthy and safe environment. You want to create a safe space for your patients and one way to do so is to get a flu shot. When you live and work with children, pregnant woman, or the elderly who aren’t vaccinated, you may increase your own risk of getting the virus if you don’t get the flu shot. Don’t compromise the health of your patients. Getting a flu shot means being responsible and courteous to the well-being of your patients. You have the power to provide a safer environment and help provide the best healthcare possible! Your healthcare career is about giving, so give patients the reassurance of maintaining a healthy environment as much as possible.

Before you get the flu shot, check with your regular doctor to make sure your medical history and current health status allows you to safety get the flu shot. Think about the ways you could benefit yourself and those around you! The vaccine can help you enjoy the busy fall weather and even help decrease the flu epidemic in your local community. We hope these tips help you realize how important and convenient getting a flu shot is this season!

This article is provided by Branford Hall Career Institute. We provide articles on public health, program-related features, and health and wellness tips. For more information on our career training programscontact us today!