Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Urges Families to Get Vaccinated This Flu Season

ATLANTA (Oct. 27, 2017) – With influenza season around the corner, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta is urging families to get vaccinated to be protected from the flu virus this year. For optimal protection, Children’s recommends everyone receive their flu vaccination by the end of October 2017.  

“The flu season is unpredictable. The best way to protect yourself and your family from the flu is for everyone 6 months and older to get a seasonal flu vaccine,” said Andi Shane, MD, MPH, MSc, Medical Director of Hospital Epidemiology at Children's. “We are fortunate to have vaccines for seasonal influenza—commonly known as the flu shot—that can help prevent flu infections and prevent the spread of the flu. It’s important for everyone over the age of 6 months old to get a seasonal flu vaccine as soon as possible to have the best chance of immunity when flu is present in our community.”

Seasonal flu infections were associated with 106 pediatric deaths and more than 17,600 hospitalizations nationwide during the 2016-17 influenza season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

"While everyday preventative actions to stop the spread of the flu and other respiratory viruses like washing or sanitizing hands, covering your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, and limiting exposure to other ill persons can help, getting a flu vaccine is a step that you can take to protect yourself, your family and the community against the spread of flu,” said Renee Watson, RNC, BSN, CPHQ, CIC, Senior Director of Quality and Patient Safety/Infection Prevention and Epidemiology at Children's.

Everyone 6 months of age and older should be vaccinated annually against influenza. Children younger than 8 years may need two doses of flu vaccine to be fully protected from flu. The two doses should be given at least four weeks apart. If the child has received two or more total doses of flu vaccine during any previous influenza season, they will only need one dose during this season. The child’s doctor or other healthcare professional can tell parents or guardians whether a child needs two doses.

To better understand flu symptoms and when to seek health care, visit To find out where flu shots are available, visit Healthmap Vaccine.

About Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta

As the only freestanding pediatric healthcare system in Georgia, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta is the trusted leader in caring for kids. The not-for-profit organization’s mission is to make kids better today and healthier tomorrow through more than 60 pediatric specialties and programs, top healthcare professionals, and leading research and technology. Children’s is one of the largest pediatric clinical care providers in the country, managing more than one million patient visits annually at three hospitals, Marcus Autism Center, the Center for Advanced Pediatrics, urgent care centers and neighborhood locations. Consistently ranked among the top children’s hospitals by U.S. News & World Report, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta has impacted the lives of kids in Georgia, across the United States and around the world for more than 100 years thanks to generous support from the community.

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