Jefferson County, Colo. — As we enter flu season, Jefferson County Public Health (JCPH) is recommending the Jefferson County community, ages six months and older, get their annual flu vaccine. While there is no way of knowing yet what the flu season will look like this year, getting a flu vaccine is an added way to protect you and your family from the influenza virus and give you some peace of mind.
Influenza can cause serious illness that can result in hospitalization and even death. Some people are more at risk for the flu [external link], including older adults, young children, pregnant women and people with some chronic health conditions. According to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment [external link], more than 1,200 Coloradans were hospitalized from the flu, and there was one pediatric death during the 2021-2022 flu season.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) [external link], recommends everyone six months of age and older get a flu vaccine every flu season. The flu vaccine is safe and effective and is the best protection against the flu, reducing the risk of hospitalization in adults and pregnant women by 40 percent, according to the CDC. Most people who get the flu vaccine have little to no side effects.
“If we have learned anything in recent years, it’s the power of prevention,” said Gwyn Rodman-Rice, Interim Director of Clinic Services at JCPH. “It’s really up to all of us to do our part. By getting the flu vaccine, especially when paired with other steps to prevent the spread of disease, like frequent handwashing and staying home when sick, together we can protect our community from the flu and its potentially serious complications.”
It’s also important to remember that COVID-19 is still circulating in our community and it’s possible to get sick with both the flu and COVID-19. Each virus can have very serious complications. The good news is that you can get both your flu vaccine and your COVID-19 vaccine — including boosters and additional doses if you are eligible — at the same time. This includes the new COVID-19 omicron (bivalent) booster that targets both the original strain of the virus and the omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5.
Both the flu and COVID-19 vaccines are widely available at many healthcare providers, pharmacies and clinics, including at the JCPH clinic at 645 Parfet Street in Lakewood. Appointments at JCPH are available Monday – Wednesday from 7 a.m. - 5 p.m. and Thursdays from 1-5 p.m. by calling 303-239-7078. In addition to the flu vaccine, all childhood vaccines are available, and appointments are often available for same or next day.
Find a flu vaccine site [external link] or a COVID-19 vaccination site [external link] near you.
About Jefferson County Public Health
Public health is what we do collectively to prevent illness and premature death and promote health in our neighborhoods and communities. Jefferson County Public Health (JCPH) is a nationally accredited health department committed to promoting and protecting health across the lifespan for all people through prevention, education and partnerships. To learn more about JCPH visit https://www.jeffco.us/public-health. You can also follow JCPH on Twitter @JeffcoPH [external link], Instagram @JeffcoPH [external link] and Facebook @jeffcopublichealth [external link].