Who needs 3 vaccines this cold and flu season?

Doctor wiping little girl's arm for vaccination

This article appeared on WLNS. Read more here.

There’s a chill in the air and, depending on where you live, there may even be snow in the forecast. Sure, that could be a sign that the holidays are around the corner, but it also means cold and flu season is knocking on our doorsteps.

With that, of course, comes the push to get vaccines, whether that be for the flu or the latest COVID booster.

But, if you meet certain criteria, you may be due for more than one or two shots.

Let’s start with the obvious: the flu vaccine.

The season’s flu vaccine was released last month, and according to the CDC, as many as 170 million doses are expected to be dispersed. As usual, the CDC is recommending everyone 6 months old and older (unless you’re allergic to the ingredients or have had an adverse effect to a previous vaccine) get the single-dose shot. For the first time, the CDC is recommending a higher dose flu vaccine for those who are 65 years old and older.

While you’re getting your flu shot, health experts also suggest getting your COVID booster.

The updated boosters were approved for nearly all Americans in September. Like the flu vaccine, the COVID booster is available to anyone 6 months old and older — the Food and Drug Administration has not yet approved a vaccine dose for the youngest Americans.

You can get both the flu shot and COVID booster at the same time. If you are eligible, you could get a third vaccine in the same appointment: the RSV vaccine.

Earlier this year, the FDA approved the first-ever vaccine to prevent RSV, or respiratory syncytial virus, in older adults.

“The RSV vaccine is very specifically for adults who are aged 60 and older,” Dr. Keri Althoff, an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, previously told Nexstar.

People who are between 32 and 36 weeks pregnant may also receive the vaccine, according to the CDC.

In August, the FDA approved the first vaccine to prevent RSV in infants. The vaccine is intended for pregnant women in their third trimester,

CDC recommendations say infants younger than 8 months born during or entering their first RSV season and those between 8 and 19 months who are at an increased risk for severe RSV disease and entering their second RSV season can receive one dose of this vaccine.

RSV causes cold-like symptoms in most people, but can be more severe for infants, young children, older adults, and those with weakened immune systems. CDC estimates say as many as 10,000 people over the age of 65 are killed each year by the virus.

That staggering statistic is why the vaccine is limited in availability.

There are, of course, other vaccines you may be encouraged to get by your healthcare provider.

You can review vaccine recommendations from the CDC here, which include the aforementioned shots, routine vaccines, and those that can vary based on age, life events, travel, and health conditions.


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I Vaccinate provides information and tools based on real medical science and research to help Michigan parents protect their kids. Support is provided by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and the Franny Strong Foundation.

You’ve got questions. That’s a good thing.

As parents, determining how best to protect our children can be overwhelming and confusing. We’re here to help.

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