It’s likely that the flu and COVID-19 will both spread this fall and winter. We know that hospitals could be overwhelmed treating patients for both illnesses. This means getting a flu vaccine this flu season is more important than ever.
How to Get the Flu Vaccine
At Baystate Health, all current Baystate Medical Practices patients will be offered flu shots. To schedule your flu vaccine, call your primary care provider's office.
We offer primary care services across the Pioneer Valley.
Find a Primary Care Practice
We also offer flu shots at three urgent care locations: Longmeadow, Westfield, and Feeding Hills (open on evenings and weekends).
You can walk in to one of these three urgent care center or call ahead.
Check in for Urgent Care Online
Does it Have to be a Shot?
We get it — some people want to avoid getting shots. This year, with the exception of people with certain medical conditions, you can opt for a flu shot or a nasal spray (FluMist).
According to the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics, children older than 2 years have the option of getting either FluMist or the shot without one type being preferred over the other.
What are the Benefits of Getting a Flu Vaccine?
While getting a flu vaccine will not protect against COVID-19, there are many important benefits, including:
Flu vaccines have been shown to reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalization, and death.
- Getting a flu vaccine can also save healthcare resources for the care of patients with COVID-19.
Who Should Get the Flu Vaccine?
All healthy adults and children over 6 months old should get the flu vaccine.
- People age 65 and older
- Children 6 months and older
- Pregnant women
- Healthcare workers
- People with asthma, heart disease, diabetes, or weakened immune systems
- Caregivers of children under 5 years old
- People who have had COVID-19
The best time to get the flu vaccine is during September or October.
Who should not get a flu vaccine?
Infants younger than 6 months of age
- Anyone with a history of Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS)
- Anyone who has had a severe reaction to the flu vaccine in the past.
- Anyone who currently has a moderate or severe illness or fever