STATEWIDE — Pediatricians recommend it is more important than ever to get vaccinated for the flu, in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
What You Need To Know
- AAP: vaccinate kids by end of October
- Flu, coronavirus symptoms can mimic each other
- Doctors say flu is deadlier in children than COVID-19
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends parents vaccinate their children by the end of October. AAP also recommends everyone six months of age and older get an annual influenza vaccine.
About 80 percent of children who die from the flu are not vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Over the past flu season, nearly 200 children and teenagers died of complications from the flu.
“When you have two diseases like flu and Covid occurring at the same time, it’s going to cause tremendous confusion, especially to doctors and everyone trying to diagnose what’s going on,” explained Dr. Michael Muszynski, a pediatric infectious disease specialist who is on the COVID-19 Expert Panel for AAP’s Florida Chapter.
Flu and coronavirus symptoms can mimic each other, but young children are at a higher risk of severe illness from influenza.
“Overwhelming the medical system with two bad diseases that could put people in the hospital is a concern of all physicians in infectious disease at the moment,” said Muszynski.
The flu season typically lasts through the fall and winter.