Do you want to feel fabulous or flu-ish this season?

A little prevention can go a long way. Especially when it comes to the flu. So make plans to get your vaccination early this season. A shot of prevention can go a long way to keeping you healthy. And we're covering flu shots at 100 percent. That's right, no copay, no deductible, when you see an in-network doctor or participating pharmacy. (Applies to fully insured group and individual members. If providers file the flu shot with a sick or regular visit, members must still pay their copayment or deductible.)

Facts on the Flu Shot

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. It can cause mild-to-severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The best way to be fabulous is by getting a flu shot each year.

  • Three strains of influenza are expected this flu season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The new flu shot will cover them all.
  • It takes about two weeks for a flu shot to work. The sooner you get a flu shot, the sooner you're protected.
  • The vaccine should cover you through the entire flu season, which typically ends in May.

Get Vaccinated and Feel Fab-Flu-Less

The single best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu vaccine each season. There are two types of flu vaccines:

  • The flu shot. It's an inactivated vaccine (containing killed virus). The shot is approved for use in people 6 months of age and older, including healthy people, people with chronic medical conditions and pregnant women.
  • The nasal spray flu vaccine. It's a vaccine made with live, weakened flu viruses that do not cause the flu. It is approved for use in healthy* people 2-49 years of age who are not pregnant.

How to Stay Fit and Fabulous this Flu Season

  • Get a flu shot so you'll stay fit and fabulous this flu season. After all, prevention really is the best medicine.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Proper hand-washing technique includes washing with soap and warm water for 15 to 20 seconds.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Try to stay in good general health. Get plenty of sleep, exercise, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids and eat nutritious food.
  • If you get the flu, stay home from work, school, and social gatherings. In this way, you will help prevent others from catching your illness.
  • Try not to touch your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs often spread this way.
  • Eat lots of green vegetables.

Facts from the CDC

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers guidance and information on flu vaccinations. Here are some questions and answers to help determine if the flu vaccination is right for you.

Who Should Get Vaccinated This Season?

Everyone who is at least 6 months of age should get a flu vaccine this season. It's especially important for some people to get vaccinated. Those people include the following:

  • People who are at high risk of developing serious complications like pneumonia if they get sick with the flu.

    This includes:

    • People who have certain medical conditions including asthma, diabetes, and chronic lung disease.
    • Pregnant women.
    • People 65 years and older.
  • People who live with or care for others who are high risk of developing serious complications.

    This includes:

    • Household contacts and caregivers of people with certain medical conditions including asthma, diabetes, and chronic lung disease.

A detailed list is available at Who Should Get Vaccinated Against Influenza. A complete list of health and age factors that are known to increase a person's risk of developing serious complications from flu is available at People Who Are at High Risk of Developing Flu-Related Complications.

Who Should Not Be Vaccinated?

There are some people who should not get a flu vaccine without first consulting a physician. These include:

  • People who have a severe allergy to chicken eggs.
  • People who have had a severe reaction to an influenza vaccination.
  • Children younger than 6 months of age (influenza vaccine is not approved for this age group), and
  • People who have a moderate-to-severe illness with a fever (they should wait until they recover to get vaccinated).
  • People with a history of Guillain–Barré Syndrome (a severe paralytic illness, also called GBS) that occurred after receiving influenza vaccine and who are not at risk for severe illness from influenza should generally not receive vaccine. Tell your doctor if you ever had Guillain-Barré Syndrome. Your doctor will help you decide whether the vaccine is recommended for you.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is a source for updated information on the flu. Hotline at: 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636). This line is available in English and Spanish, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.