PSA: Have you Gotten a Flu Shot Yet?

A brief digression from your regularly scheduled programming.

Those of you who know me know that I do a considerable amount of work on vaccines. Among all the revolutions that have come over the past century in modern medicine, I think I can safely argue that–at least from a public health standpoint–vaccines have had the greatest impact on disease burden.

I normally don’t write posts on health topics, but here’s why you should get a flu vaccine this year, aside from the obvious reason that you don’t want to get the flu: The symptoms of the flu mimic the early signs and symptoms of Ebola. Depending on how bad the situation gets (or, alternatively, how paranoid your local health authority gets), you could walk into the doctor with the flu and end up getting screened or even quarantined.

If you live in NYC, go here and follow the instructions to find a vaccination site.

If you live elsewhere, go here.

At most, it’s $35 for a shot; you can even get them for free at some clinics.

Even though I work on vaccines, I’ve never gotten a flu shot before. I’ve scheduled an appointment for Friday!


3 thoughts on “PSA: Have you Gotten a Flu Shot Yet?

  1. Phil McPhilly

    Yep, cardiologist delivered the dose this week. Sore shoulder for a bit and some muscle spasm on my injured left side (pinched neck nerves) … I’d ask him to go right arm next time so it doesn’t mess with my spasm prone side. But otherwise worth it.

  2. exmaschine

    Interesting topic and one that will probably spark much debate John.
    I think it’s a very personal decision, one that should weighed with much analysis and care.

    Having worked for two major pharma’s in the past, my eyes were opened to the paradox that is the Big Drug Maker Business. While they do and have provided a fair amount of products that help improve the quality of life and have helped save lives, they also have a nefarious side that is greed driven to the point of sacrificing lives, in order to turn a huge profit. It’s a complex part of life and industry for sure. But I certainly don’t turn a blind eye to some of the negative aspects of Big Pharma.

    I had received the flu shot one year, back in 1997, I believe while working at a pharma company. Proceeded to vomit for 2 days and then contract one of the worst bouts of flu I have ever had- with a trip to the ER for severe dehydration (way before I was a cyclist and understood about proper hydration!) 😀

    Since then, I have not nor would I even consider another flu shot. Even though the injection consists of a ‘dead’ virus, Too many variables with a persons individual physiology and In my opinion. For every study that show vaccines have a direct correlation on reducing influenza or our breaks or disease, there are studies that show the opposite (little to no correlation) I believe that introducing foreign substances into the body is not so much ‘preventive’ medicine. For me, I would rather eat as clean as I can and exercise.

    Here is an interesting blurb-
    “statistics usually group influenza and pneumonia together with data for the United States starting in the year 1900 to the present. What it shows is that the death rate for influenza and pneumonia was at 200 per 100,000 and that slowly declined over the years. Aside from the 1918 flu pandemic, the death rate continued to decline and reached approximately 20 to 25 per 100,000 by the early 1970s”



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