About the Flu
Influenza (flu) is a respiratory virus that can spread rapidly in communities and be passed from person to person. The flu can cause mild to severe illness, with older people, young children, and people with chronic conditions like asthma, heart disease, and diabetes, are often at greater risk for serious complications. Flu season typically begins in the fall and ends in the spring.
Pediatricians play a crucial role to prevent the spread of the flu through annual flu vaccinations. The CDC is recommended that every person 6 months of age and older receive a flu vaccination. Flu vaccinations before the end of October, before the flu begins spreading in the community are recommended, but every patient visit is an opportunity to promote and educate patients and their families about the flu vaccine. Increasing flu vaccination rates is the best way to prevent the flu!
For more information on immunizations and making strong vaccine recommendations, click here.
Visit www.vaccinefinder.org to find a flu or COVID-19 vaccination clinic near you.
Resources and Toolkits for the 2021-2022 Flu Season
- American Lung Association released the Fend off Flu Campaign to promote flu vaccination. It includes flu facts and education materials
- Families Fighting Flu has Flu Champion Toolkits for healthcare professionals, employers, schools, and advocates.
- CMS: CMS Flu Vaccine page and Flu Vaccine and Partner Toolkit page
- The Ad Council, AMA, and the CDC are continuing their No One Has Time for Flu campaign to encourage Americans to get vaccinated against flu.
- The CDC's Let's Play Catch-Up Campaign has new resources to help immunization partners and healthcare providers communicate with parents the importance of staying on track with routine childhood vaccinations.
- CDC: Flu and COVID-19 updated FAQs.
- AAP flu recommendations allow for coadministration with the COVID-19 vaccine
- COCA Call webinar 2021–2022 Recommendations for Influenza Prevention and Treatment in Children: An Update for Pediatric Practitioners
- Ad Council launched the Get My Flu Shot Campaign Toolkit, which includes PSAs and social media posts.
- Flu Fact Sheet and social media posts from the National Forum for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention
CDC Communication Resources webpage for season flu vaccination resources:
- Web Resources: 2021-2022 Flu Season FAQ, Adults with Chronic Conditions, Key Facts About Flu Vaccines
- Digital Campaign Resources: Digital Media Toolkit (will be continually updated throughout the season), Social Media Toolkit, I Get It Frames, Spanish Social Media Toolkit
- Multi-Language Resources: Multi-Language Factsheets, Spanish Communication Resources
- AAP Redbook Online Influenza Resource Page includes news, guidance, and patient education materials
- DSHS Influenza Resources: including webinars, vaccine information, and surveillance
- CDC: How to Prevent Flu - provides actions you can take to fight the flu, a summary infographic, and digital resources
- AAP: Prepare for Flu Season during the COVID-19 Pandemic
- AMA: 6 Things Doctors Can Do to Boost Flu Vaccination Rates Among Children
- CDC: Vaccines for your Children - Flu
- Sample vaccine recommendation strategy: Making a Strong Flu Vaccine Recommendation (SHARE)
- Immunization Action Coalition Vaccine Handout: Flu
- AAP: Preparing for Questions Parents May Ask about Vaccines - one-pager with sample questions and answers about vaccines
- AIM/IAC: Communicating the Benefits of Seasonal Influenza Vaccine during COVID-19
State and National Surveillance
- CDC Flu Activity and Surveillance
- 2020-2021 Texas Influenza Surveillance Activity
- Flu Star (national flu activity tracking map and app)
- AAP Virtual Townhall - Preparing Your Practice for the 2020-21 Influenza Season
- Pediatrics on Call Podcast - Influenza Policy During Covid-19, Hearing Screenings and Intervention
Find parent resources here.