There is still time to protect against flu. It’s 2021 National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW)!

Did you know that flu season can begin as early as October, it usually peaks between December and February, and it can last as late as May? As long as flu viruses are spreading, it’s not too late to get a flu vaccine to protect yourself and your loved ones through fall, winter and into spring.

Access the CDC Influenza Vaccination Week Communications Toolkit and other resources.

Flu activity during the 2020-2021 season was very low, likely because of COVID-19 prevention measures – and it’s important to know that immune protection against flu decreases over time, so many people may have reduced immunity to flu this season. As we celebrate this holiday season, health experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are particularly concerned about the impact reduced immunity could have on people who are already at higher risk of developing serious flu complications, including those with certain chronic health conditions like asthma, heart disease and diabetes.

“CDC estimates that only about half of adults 18 to 64 years of age with at least one chronic health condition received a flu vaccine last season,” Dr. Michael Jhung, a medical officer with CDC’s Influenza Division, said. “This means many people who are most vulnerable to getting very sick with flu are not getting the protection they need.”

While it is ideal to get a flu vaccine before flu starts spreading in your community, getting vaccinated later is still beneficial during most seasons. Flu most commonly peaks in February and significant activity can continue into May, so there is still time to get vaccinated if you haven’t already. This National Influenza Vaccination Week, go to your doctor or local pharmacy to get your flu vaccine, encourage your  patients and loved ones to get their flu vaccine and learn more about the benefits of getting vaccinated against flu.