We’ve all experienced the flu at some time or another, but how many of us get vaccinated? Turns out about one-third of senior citizens don’t get the flu vaccine! It’s especially important for at-risk groups, such as young children and seniors, to get vaccinated and lessen the risk of devastating consequences such as hospitalization – or even death. According to the CDC, senior citizens in particular is the group most affected by the seasonal flu because of their weakened immune system. The good news is that there are things seniors can do to lessen their chances of getting the flu, the most important being to consider vaccination.
Posted by: Aging.com
A Guide to Seasonal Flu for Seniors
Why Seniors Should Consider Vaccination
Seniors are the demographic group most affected by the flu. The CDC reports that between 70 and 85 percent of deaths caused by the seasonal flu are over the age of 65, and that up to 70 percent of flu-related hospitalizations that occur are seniors. These are staggeringly high rates, and they can be directly connected to how often seniors get vaccinated, in addition to seniors’ weakened immune systems making them especially vulnerable to the flu.
Getting vaccinated helps, too. The CDC found in 2016 that seniors getting the flu vaccine—which covers most strains of influenza A and B—reduced the likelihood they’d be hospitalized because of the flu by more than 50 percent. Vaccinated people over the age of 50 were found to be 57 percent less likely to be hospitalized from the flu than non-vaccinated people. The hospitalization rates were similar for people over the age of 75, as well.
Despite how effective the flu vaccine can be, about one-third of seniors still don’t get vaccinated. Rates have hovered around this number for the last 15 years, and the government aims to increase senior flu vaccination rates to 90 percent by 2020.
So, what can senior citizens do to protect themselves against the flu? The best thing is to get the flu vaccine. Did you know that Orchard Hospital has a walk-in clinic? Visit us at our Medical Specialty Center—Your Everyday Health Care Clinic—if you think you may be coming down with the flu. We offer flu immunizations as well as screening, diagnosis, and treatment for the flu. We will take care of you quickly and efficiently. Appointments are recommended, but walk-ins are welcome. Open 7 days a week. It’s our goal to have fast and friendly care while delivering quality health care.
Other preventative measures include washing your hands frequently, staying away from others who are already infected with the flu, eating healthy, and getting help right away if you feel like you’re getting sick.
Our mission at Orchard Hospital is to provide our community with superior healthcare. We strive to ensure that your experience at Orchard Hospital is as pleasant and comfortable as possible. Our priority is to provide you with the care you need when you need it, with skill, compassion, and respect.