October rolls around, and that means it’s time for football, Fall, Halloween, and….vaccines?
Yes, indeed—the older adults in your life (and you, as their caregiver/loved one) need to get ready to roll up their sleeves and get the latest flu shots and COVID boosters for better protection as we go into the winter.
Here are a few more details on the shots.
Flu Shot: An Annual Event
Health experts recommend that we get a new flu shot every year. Unfortunately, a one-and-done approach doesn’t work with flu shots. That’s because new variants of the flu come around each year, and those who make flu vaccines will try to target those variants.
Those who track incidences of the flu are already reporting higher numbers this fall, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The use of masks and staying home gave us more flu protection in 2020 and even 2021. This year, with most people out and about as they were pre-pandemic, that protectiveness is not in place.
The flu can make anyone feel miserable, but it’s especially dangerous for older adults. About 70% to 85% of flu-related deaths have occurred in older adults in previous years, and those 65 and older have accounted for 50% to 70% of flu hospitalizations, according to the CDC.
Flu vaccines lower the risk of flu-related illness by 40% to 60%, the CDC reports.
For older adults on Medicare, there’s no charge for a flu shot. It is covered under Medicare Part B.
Ask your doctor today about how and where to get a flu shot if you’re not sure where to go. In addition to doctor’s offices, many pharmacies and supermarkets also offer flu shots.
Take Advantage of the New COVID Booster
The newest COVID booster is available for those who have had a COVID vaccine or booster in the past. The booster protects against the variants currently circulating in the U.S. and that are expected to circulate this Fall and Winter.
There are two currently available COVID boosters in the U.S. as of October 2022. The one made by Pfizer-BioNTech is available for anyone age 5 or older who got an initial vaccine or booster shot at least two months before. The Moderna vaccine is available for anyone ages 6 or older if they had their last vaccination at least two months before.
The current COVID strain protects against both the original COVID strain and the Omicron subvariants. Previous vaccines did not protect against those subvariants.
COVID vaccines are free, according to Vaccine.gov.
You can get both your flu shot and your COVID booster at the same session, if you’d like. Or, you can schedule them separately. If you’re not sure which is best for you, ask your doctor.
Call Secure Aging to Find Out How We Can Help Seniors With Care Management
At Secure Aging in Bradenton, we transform the weight of the world into a sigh of relief for our senior clients and their concerned family members. The mission of Secure Aging is to protect and preserve our client’s independence and dignity through careful and thoughtful financial and care management. As our clients age, it is their desire to remain independent and age with dignity. Our services protect our clients from talented con artists looking to exploit and deplete the financial resources of our vulnerable seniors. Secure Aging helps families in Manatee County and Sarasota County and in and around the communities of Anna Maria, Bradenton, Bradenton Beach, Ellenton, Holmes Beach, Lakewood Ranch, Longboat Key, Myakka City, Palmetto, Parrish, and Sarasota. Call us at 941-761-9338, or visit us online at www.secureaging.com.