Although the flu vaccine will not protect against COVID-19, there are many important benefits associated with getting the flu vaccination:
• Flu vaccines have been shown to reduce the risk of illness, hospitalisation and death associated with influenza.
• With the above, there may also be a related benefit of freeing up healthcare resources to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Important to note: There must be a two-week period between administration of the flu vaccine and the COVID-19 vaccine.
Similarly to 2020, there may be a limited supply of flu vaccinations available in 2021. So members at higher risk of contracting influenza and those over 65 years of age should prioritise getting their vaccine.
Always practice COVID-19 safety measures when visiting your healthcare provider/pharmacy to obtain your flu vaccine:
• Call ahead to confirm that they have stock of the flu vaccination
• Schedule an appointment where possible as this will reduce your waiting time and help with social distancing
• Wear a mask and ensure that you sanitise your hands
In 2020, the South Africa private sector had access to both the trivalent (TIV) vaccine (three-strain vaccine) and the Quadrivalent (QIV) vaccine which includes four strains of the virus. In 2021, the private sector will only have access to the Quadrivalent (QIV) vaccine which comes at a higher cost. Fedhealth will however cover the costs of the QIV from Risk for all members and their beneficiaries.
Ask your pharmacy or GP about getting the flu vac today!