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 www.mylocalclinic.com 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 www.mass.gov/flu or call the Immunization Program  at (617) 983-6800.

Written By:


health communication writer and editor

Recent Posts

Encourage Kids to Play Outdoors! posted on Jul 29

Encourage Kids to Play Outdoors!

It’s easy to get caught up in day-to-day activities like work, housecleaning and laundry and forget to make time for the things that are much more important to us– like spending quality time with our children. Does this sound familiar? If so, sometimes it’s fun   …Continue Reading Encourage Kids to Play Outdoors!

My Journey Back to Watermelon posted on Jul 25

My Journey Back to Watermelon

The other night, my parents took me and my fiancé* out to eat. My mom likes to keep the conversation light, and as usual, asked questions like “what was your favorite memory as a kid?” and “what would you rather have, a beach house or   …Continue Reading My Journey Back to Watermelon

Kids with Asthma Can Be Active in Summer! posted on Jul 24

Summer in New England is a brief but glorious time when many families experience a change in pace as schools let out and activities slow. Weeks that were once packed with classes, homework and practice are suddenly open for new activities. Whether these include summer   …Continue Reading Kids with Asthma Can Be Active in Summer!