Flu Activity High in Several Parts of the Country; Lung Association Launches New Campaign to Urge Vaccination

Effort kicks off during National Influenza Vaccination week to educate people about the flu, encourage flu shots
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), influenza activity is considered “high” or “very high” in several states across the country. Today, on the first day of National Influenza Vaccination Week, the American Lung Association is launching a campaign to educate adults about the flu with the goal of increasing flu vaccination rates, specifically for people with high-risk conditions.

Flu activity has been relatively low the last two flu seasons because of COVID-19 precautions, but this year we are already seeing more cases than previous years,” said Harold Wimmer, National President and CEO of the American Lung Association. “While anyone can get the flu, certain people are at increased risk for developing serious complications such as those living with chronic medical conditions including asthma, COPD and other chronic lung diseases, as well as heart disease and diabetes. Getting a flu shot protects you, and the people around you. That’s why it is critical for everyone to get their annual flu shot. If you haven’t had your flu shot yet, now is the time.”

In past flu seasons, 9 out of 10 adults hospitalized with flu have at least one underlying medical condition. In addition to those with medical conditions, people from racial and ethnic minority groups are at higher risk for being hospitalized with flu and have lower flu vaccination rates compared with non-Hispanic white adults. In the 2021-22 flu season, 53.9% of white adults got the flu shot, while only 37.9% of Hispanic/Latino adults, 42% of Black adults, and 40.9% of American Indian/Alaska Native adults were vaccinated.

Peak flu season usually occurs from December through March. Flu vaccination is the best way to help protect against flu and severe illness from the virus and is recommended for everyone six months of age and older. The flu shot can be given at the same time as COVID-19 vaccination and protection from flu vaccination takes about two weeks to develop.

Through the new campaign, the American Lung Association has partnered with CSL Seqirus to educate Americans about the flu and steps they can take to protect themselves from severe flu illness. Learn more at Lung.org/prevent-flu.
For more information, contact:

Jill Dale
[email protected]

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