Five Excuses for Not Getting a Flu Shot

And why they're bogus

October 11, 2018


The 2017-18 influenza killed more than 80,000 people, but one-third of Americans have no intentions of getting their flu shot this year (according to Stericycle).  Here are the five most common excuses for not getting a flu shot and why they're all bogus from a recent article in the NY Post.

1.  "I'm afraid of needles."  It's not valid because they have a nasal-spray form of the vaccine.  So, if you don't want to get stuck, you don't have to. 

2.  "I don't have time."  If you can't get in to see your doc, there are lots of places that accept walk-ins... CVS, Walgreens and Walmart are three big ones.

3.  "Winter is still two months away."  The vaccine needs a couple of weeks to become effective, and flu season is starting now.

4.  "I got a flu shot before and it gave me the flu."  It can't give you the flu because it's made with a dead version of the virus.  Some people do have mild side effects and in rare cases, an allergic reaction.  But it won't give you the flu.

5.  "It might not work."  This one is true.  But it's still not a good excuse.  Scientists have to predict which strains of the flu are going around.  So, it involves some guesswork.  But even if they guess wrong, the strains are pretty similar.  So, a flu shot will lessen the symptoms even if it's not an exact match. 

My wife is a microbiologist.  She makes sure I get a flu shot every year, and I'm glad she does.  Have you ever had the flu?  It's gawdawful!