Flu Season and Covid 19 Symptoms
Download Adobe Acrobat Reader to view or print PDF.
As we rapidly enter flu season (October through May), while currently in the midst of the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) pandemic, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommends routine annual influenza vaccination for all persons aged 6 months and older who do not have contraindications to the vaccines. Not only does the vaccination help protect from getting the flu; it also helps stop the spread of the virus to others.
Influenza (flu) and COVID-19 are both contagious respiratory illnesses which spreads mainly from person to person. The flu is caused by the influenza viruses and COVID-19 is caused by SARS-CoV-2 virus. Because some of the symptoms of flu and COVID-19 are similar, it may be hard to tell the differences on symptoms alone and testing may be needed to confirm a diagnosis. Signs and symptoms of COVID-19 are different from the flu virus and may include a change in or loss of taste or smell.
Although most individuals who become infected with influenza viruses will recover, influenza can cause serious illness and death particularly among older adults, very young children, individuals with chronic medical conditions and pregnant women. Currently there is no vaccine for the COVID-19 virus. According to the CDC estimated influenza-associated deaths average 49,000 people annually.
Health experts and CDC has made the following recommendations to help prevent the spread of the influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) virus.
- Cover mouth and nose with a tissue when sneezing or coughing
- Wash hands often with proper handwashing techniques and/or use hand sanitizers
- Avoid touching eyes, nose or mouth
- Stay home when sick and encourage parents of sick children to keep them at home
- Do not share eating utensils, drinking glasses or other personal items
- Touching an inanimate object with flu viruses on it, such as doorknobs, elevator buttons, desktops, and then touching the mouth or nose also may infect people; therefore, wash hands/use hand sanitizers
- Wear mask and practice physical distancing