Post Content

Donna Lazorik Posted by Donna Lazorik, RN, MS. Donna is the Immunization Coordinator in the Division of Epidemiology and Immunization at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.

Don’t let the warm temperatures fool you – flu season will be here before you know it. The best way to protect against influenza is to get a flu vaccine before the season starts.  This is true even if you were vaccinated last season.  Health experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend that everyone 6 months of age and older receive a flu vaccine every year. 

That’s because flu can be very serious – every year in Massachusetts, an average of 5,000 residents are hospitalized due to complications from the flu, resulting in up to 800 deaths.  The good news is that many of these hospitalizations and deaths are preventable.  You and your family can stay healthy this season by getting vaccinated.

This is especially important if you or someone in your family: 

  • Is pregnant
  • Has a chronic health condition like asthma, diabetes, or heart, lung, liver, or kidney disease
  • Is immuno-suppressed
  • Is very overweight
  • Is 50 years of age or older.

Flu vaccination is also especially important for children younger than 5 years of age, who are at higher risk of serious flu complications if they get the flu.  For the same reason, if you’re a caregiver or household contact of children less than five years old it’s important that you get vaccinated as well.  

The flu vaccine is safe and effective, and widely available.  There is more vaccine available this year than ever before. 

To find out where to get the flu vaccine: 

  • Call your health care provider;
  • Contact your local health department;
  • Check with your local pharmacy; or 
  • Visit the Massachusetts Flu Clinic website at for a list of flu clinics near you. 

For more information about influenza, flu vaccine, and other ways that you and your family can stay healthy this flu season, please visit or call the Immunization Program  at (617) 983-6800.

Written By:

health communication writer and editor

Recent Posts

Weekly Flu Report, October 21, 2016 posted on Oct 21

Hello and welcome back to another flu season’s worth of Weekly Flu Reports. Each Friday from now through May you can check back here to see the latest information on the impact of flu in communities across Massachusetts. To kick things off, the first Weekly Flu   …Continue Reading Weekly Flu Report, October 21, 2016

Highlights of the October 20th Public Health Council Meeting posted on Oct 20

The October monthly meeting of the Public Health Council included a pair of Determination of Need requests, two votes on final amendments to regulations, and three informational briefings for Council members on the status of proposed regulatory amendments which have yet to come for a   …Continue Reading Highlights of the October 20th Public Health Council Meeting

Domestic Violence Awareness Month posted on Oct 17

Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Many women experiencing domestic violence suffer in silence.  October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and the opportunity to shine the light on a public health issue impacting millions of people in America.  Women experiencing domestic violence no longer need to suffer in silence; always remember   …Continue Reading Domestic Violence Awareness Month