Doctors: Flu shots ‘crucial’ during COVID-19 pandemic

Doctors say flu shots 'crucial' amid COVID-19 pandemic
Published: Aug. 28, 2020 at 6:58 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Doctors are preparing for flu season as COVID-19 cases continue to climb across Kansas.

Hospital resources and capacity is a problem every flu season, but even more so during a global pandemic. Doctors say that’s why getting your flu shot this year is even more important.

“Every year during the influenza season, the hospital gets pretty full and takes up ICU beds. If you have COVID on top, that’s when you potentially overwhelm hospital resources,” said Dr. Robert Wittler, the Director of Infectious Disease Division at KU School of Medicine-Wichita.

Doctors say COVID-19 and flu symptoms can mimic each other. That’s why they say flu shots are crucial.

Pharmacies are stocking up on flu vaccines now. Some area hospitals are offering free flu shots for people who do not have health insurance.

“The Susan B. Allen Foundation is partnering with the Butler County Health Department. We will be offering some drive-thru flu shot clinics in El Dorado and Augusta,” said Dan Davis, Vice President of the Board of Directors for Susan B. Allen Memorial Hospital.

The CDC recommends that you wait until late September to get your flu vaccine in order to have protection against the virus. Some doctors say, considering the pandemic, getting the vaccine now is worth a shot.

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