As flu season approaches, health officials are urging people to get a flu shot sooner than later.
For the 2019-2020 season, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say manufacturers have projected they will provide between 162 to 169 million doses of vaccines just in the U.S. alone. Flu vaccines protect against the three to four viruses that research suggests will be most common. Officials say the timing of the flu season is unpredictable and can vary in different parts of the country and from season to season. Seasonal flu activity often begins as early as October and November. Flu activity most commonly peaks in the United States in December through February. Flu vaccines are offered at doctor’s offices, clinics, health departments, and pharmacies. Recent studies by CDC researchers and others suggest that flu vaccination usually reduces the risk of influenza illness by 30% to 60% among the overall population when the vaccine viruses are like the one spreading.