It is likely that influenza (flu) viruses and the virus that causes COVID-19 will both spread this fall and winter. Healthcare systems could be overwhelmed treating both patients with flu and patients with COVID-19. Annual flu vaccines are recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for all U.S. citizens older than six months of age, barring any medical contraindications. The CDC also notes that vaccination reduces the burden of respiratory illness due to COVID-19 and the likelihood that an individual would need to quarantine if they develop respiratory symptoms. This means getting a flu vaccine during 2020-2021 is more important than ever. While getting a flu vaccine will not protect against COVID-19, there are many important benefits, such as:
- 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.
You can get your flu vaccine at your primary care practice or at many local pharmacies. For a list of Cigna in-network pharmacies click here. Staying in network for your vaccine will ensure that your vaccine is covered, and you don’t incur any unexpected costs.
In addition, Middlebury College will be offering three flu vaccination clinics for Vermont faculty and staff free of charge in collaboration with our partners at Green Mountain Higher Education Consortium and Addison County Home Health & Hospice. Two clinics will be available on campus on October 21 and October 28 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in the Goldsmith Lounge at the Virtue Field House. These two clinics are available only for faculty and staff who have been approved to work on campus. An additional clinic will be hosted at 700 Exchange Street on October 22 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. for employees working remotely.
Now is the optimal time to get vaccinated as it will ensure you are covered during peak flu season which runs from November to April. Due to strict COVID-19 protocols, vaccinations will be by appointment only. Please visit https://go.oncehub.com/MiddleburyCollegeEmployeeFluClinic to reserve a time. Appointments are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Required safety protocols will be communicated to participants directly prior to the scheduled appointment.
Contact Laura Carotenuto in Human Resources with any questions: email@example.com or (802) 443-2012.