Health officials are urging people to get flu shots this year in an effort to avoid the seasonal illness exacerbating issues caused by coronavirus.
But when should you be vaccinated? The Centers for Disease Control has a recommendation.
“Getting vaccinated in…August is too early, especially for older people, because of the likelihood of reduced protection against flu infection later in the flu season. September and October are good times to get vaccinated. However, as long as flu viruses are circulating, vaccination should continue, even in January or later,” CDC said.
Manufacturers are expected to provide as many as 194-198 million doses of flu vaccine this year, more than the 175 million dose record set during the 2019-2029 flu season.
And while a flu vaccine won’t protect your against COVID-19, there are other health benefits.
“Flu vaccines have been shown to reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalization and death. Getting a flu vaccine this fall will be more important than ever, not only to reduce your risk from flu but also to help conserve potentially scarce health care resources,” CDC said.
Here are more coronavirus headlines across the country:
Vaccine by spring?
A coronavirus vaccine will likely be widely available next spring, according to Operation Warp Speed chief adviser.
Moncef Slaoui, who is heading the White House’s accelerated vaccine program, said he expects the coronavirus vaccine to be offered between April and June of 2021. The immunizations will initially focus on the high-risk individuals, such as those with underlying health conditions and the elderly.
“I feel pretty confident we will be there,” Slaoui said about the vaccine.
Latest data shows172,418 people in the U.S. have died from coronavirus with 5,505,074 documented cases. On Wednesday, the U.S. reported 22,658 new cases and 597 new deaths.
2,000 Mississippi students quarantined
Just under 2,000 K-12 students in Mississippi have been quarantined due to possible exposure to COVID-19.
Dr. Thomas Dobbs of the Mississippi Department of Health said 1,970 students and 328 school staff are quarantined. The state is also watching two outbreaks at universities in the state – the University of Mississippi and Mississippi University for Women.
Mississippi reported 1,348 new COVID-19 cases and 31 new deaths today.
Appalachian State University suspends football practice
Appalachian State University has suspended football practice after seven students and four teachers at the North Carolina university tested positive for COVID-19. The outbreak has been linked to the school’s football team, officials said.
The infected individuals are recovering in isolation as contact tracing continues.