Doctors say flu vaccines protect entire community, not just us

Doctors say flu vaccines protect entire community, not just us

EVANSVILLE, IN (WFIE) - Flu season is right around the corner and doctors encourage everyone to get vaccinated.

Dr. Jason West, a Deaconess physician, said getting vaccinated is crucial to the community’s safety.

“It’s not just about preventing illness in your own life. It’s about preventing illness in the lives around you, particularly those that are most susceptible and at a high risk of complications,” Dr. West said.

The nasal mist is back as an option this year and for the first time in several years is being recommended by the immunization advisory council. But the nasal mists aren’t for everyone.

The live but weakened virus vaccines, such as nasal mists, are only recommended for healthy people ages 2 to 49 who are not pregnant, and do not have diabetes, or heart, kidney, liver, or lung disease.

The active virus vaccines are weakened but they are still technically “alive” which can make resulting symptoms possible.

Inactive or “dead” virus vaccines are safer for those who are more susceptible to getting sick, as patients who get the inactive flu shot are not able to get influenza from the shot.

“The more we vaccinate as a community the less likely we are to have a large outbreak,” Dr. West said.

He attributes many of the outbreaks we have had in the past to the fact that many people do not get vaccinated because they haven’t gotten the flu.

“You’re not just preventing influenza in yourself but for your loved ones and friends around you that are at much higher risk," Dr. West said.

Deaconess clinics are offering walk-in flu vaccinations at multiple locations in Princeton and Evansville.

The full list of scheduled times and locations available for walk-ins can be found by clicking the link above.

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