I Get it!
While the US remains focused on the COVID-19 pandemic, we also need to be aware of flu season as winter approaches. Flu viruses typically spread in fall and winter, with activity peaking between December and February. National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW) - December 5-11, 2021 - is a great opportunity to encourage all WIC participants 6 months and older, and staff, to get their flu vaccine.
The flu can cause mild to severe illness, but can also cause complications, some of which can be life-threatening. Getting the flu vaccine is the most important step to protect against the flu, especially for:
- Pregnant women and their developing babies
- Children younger than 5 years of age
- American Indian and Alaskan Natives
DYK? - Women with influenza are more than twice as likely to be hospitalized if they are pregnant.
Test your Flu IQ with this interactive quiz.
Resources to help educate participants on flu and the flu vaccine include:
- The difference between the Flu and COVID-19
- The difference between the Flu and a cold
- FAQs on the 2021-2022 flu season, which includes focused questions on COVID-19
- Who Should and Should NOT get a Flu Vaccine
- Flu vaccine-related topics available as a handout
- Safety information about the flu vaccine, including a Q&A and information specific to getting the flu shot during pregnancy
- A resource center with communication and education materials for participants who may be hesitant to get a flu vaccine
- Good Habits to Prevent the Flu, also available in Spanish
- Flu Information for Parents with Young Children, a resource page also available in Spanish with a fact sheet, video, and other materials
In addition to flu resources on WIC Works, you can find other immunization-related resources, such as:
- 2021 Immunization Webinar for WIC Staff
- Vaccines 101 - Information for WIC Staff
- Immunizations for Parents and Parents-to-be – booklets, in Spanish and English, to help answer questions about and address the importance of vaccines
- Immunization Schedule for Children: Birth through 6 Years
- Information on Measles
- COVID-19 - Breastfeeding and Pregnancy – new and updated information about vaccination recommendations, including boosters for eligible individuals
COVID-19 and Children
- CDC recommends everyone ages 5 and older get a COVID-19 vaccine to help protect against COVID-19.
- Although children are at a lower risk of becoming severely ill with COVID-19 compared with adults, children can
- Be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19
- Get very sick from COVID-19
- Have both short and long-term health complications from COVID-19
- Spread COVID-19 to others
- Children with underlying medical conditions are more at risk for severe illness from COVID-19 compared with children without underlying medical conditions.
- The best way to protect children against COVID-19, including the Delta variant—in school, in sports, and with their friends—is by getting them vaccinated.
Children may get a COVID-19 vaccine and other vaccines, including the flu vaccine, at the same time.
- Encourage followers to Get It! and share the reasons on social media and elsewhere using the “I Get It” Frames, social stories panels, and additional social media graphics.
- Share information relevant to your participants with sample messages and graphics for the flu and pregnant women and how the flu vaccine protects children.
- Use the CDC Digital Media Toolkit: 2021-22 Flu Season containing social media images and messages, web buttons and badges, videos, and print-ready materials like posters and flyers (some available in Spanish or multiple languages).
Help your participants find flu vaccines and pharmacies in their area, and share Flu & Pregnancy and Flu & Breastfeeding resources that cover medication safety for these populations. All participants should be encouraged to talk to their healthcare provider about medications they are taking or want to take.