Doctors say flu shots especially important during pandemic

Doctors urge people to get flu shots as pandemic goes on

ATLANTA, Ga. — Flu season is almost here, and flu shots should start being available in about a week.

Channel 2′s Carol Sbarge spoke with doctors who say getting a flu shot is especially important this year.

DeKalb County resident Carlene Phelps said she usually doesn’t get a flu shot, but will this year.

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Phelps said she makes sure her daughter gets the shot every year, and this year they will both be getting vaccinated.

“I probably will get it now too since all this stuff is going on,” Phelps said.

Flu season starts in the fall and continues into spring. Doctor’s don’t want anyone to get coronavirus or the flu, so they’re urging people to get a flu shot.

“We’re taking a few weeks advanced this year precisely because of the risk of both flu and coronavirus circulating at the same time,” Dr. Felipe Lobelo said.

Lobelo is a physician director for Kaiser Permanente who says not only are there concerns about people getting infected with coronavirus and the flu, but also that serious flu cases could strain a health care system already treating many coronavirus patients.

“We’re waiting for the coronavirus vaccine,” Lobelo said. “We’re suffering because we don’t have a vaccine against this disease, but here we have a flu vaccine that we know works.”

The flu shot will be available at pharmacies and local health departments, as well as from your healthcare physician.

Knowing the difference between flu and coronavirus symptoms is important.

One key difference is that coronavirus patients can lose their sense of taste or smell.