Protect Yourself This Flu Season

January 04, 2018
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By Regence

Flu season is in full swing with a sharp increase in cases nationwide in December. Thirty-four states now report widespread flu activity, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But it’s not too late to get a flu shot to protect yourself and those around you.

The flu vaccine can reduce the risk of flu-related doctor visits by 50-60 percent, according to the CDC. Learn more about how to protect yourself below:

Why should I get a flu shot?

The CDC recommends that everyone over the age of six months get a flu vaccine during the flu season, which began October 1 and can last until May. The flu vaccine protects you, and those around you such as family members and coworkers, from dangerous flu complications.

Each year, the flu is the cost driver of $10 billion in lost productivity and medical expenses, as around 200,000 people are hospitalized each year because of the flu virus.  Getting a flu shot is a quick, easy and affordable way to protect yourself.

Are flu shots covered?

Flu shots are covered for almost all Regence members as part of our preventative benefits. This means members can get a flu shot at no out-of-pocket to you, when you get the vaccine at an in-network pharmacy or provider.

To confirm your coverage, visit your Member Dashboard on regence.com, or contact us and we can help with details. If you have a Regence plan through your employer, your employer may have a scheduled on-site flu clinic coming up. Be sure to check with them to see if one is scheduled for your worksite.

When should I get the flu shot?

The earlier the better, as your body needs a few weeks to form the antibodies that make the vaccine effective. But, it's never too late to protect yourself from the flu virus by getting the flu vaccine.

This post was originally published on October 13, 2017 and was updated with additional information on January 4, 2018.

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