With the start of flu season, DHS employees need to remain vigilant and safeguard their own health as well as the health of their colleagues and families. Getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself and those around you from becoming ill or suffering serious medical complications from this year’s flu virus.
Annual Flu Vaccine
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone age six months and older receive a flu vaccine every year
Record flu vaccination rates and mitigation measures such as wearing face masks, school closures, reduced travel, and physical distancing contributed to a historic decline in flu rates, hospitalizations, and deaths during the 2020-2021 flu season. This year, as we return to the workplace and our children return to school, the CDC expects a higher rate of flu illness in the United States.
In addition to protecting yourself from the flu, getting your annual flu vaccine may also offer the following benefits:
- Flu vaccination protects those around you who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, including babies and young children, older adults, and people with certain chronic health conditions.
- Flu vaccination has been associated with lower rates of some cardiac issues among people with heart disease.
- Flu vaccination during pregnancy helps protect both mothers and their babies from the flu. Getting a flu vaccination during pregnancy also helps to protect babies from flu illness after birth, when infants are too young to get vaccinated.
Where can I get a flu vaccine?
The flu vaccine is available at most pharmacies and private health providers. All Federal Employees Health Benefit (FEHB) plans offer vaccine coverage. Visit the OPM Healthcare Plan Information website to review your health benefits or contact your insurance representative if you need more information on how to obtain a flu or COVID-19 vaccine.
Contact your healthcare provider or visit the CDC's Flu website for additional information.