Dr. Cohen encourages North Carolinians to get their flu shot

North Carolina news

Secretary of the NC Department Health and Human Services Dr. Mandy Cohen speaks during a press conference after touring a large-scale vaccination site at UNC’s Friday Center in Chapel Hill Tuesday, Jan. 19 2021. UNC Hospitals hope to administer 2500 first covid-19 vaccine doses at the Friday Center by the end of this week.

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) – Dr. Mandy Cohen, the state health department secretary, is encouraging North Carolinains to get vaccinated not only against COVID-19 but also the flu as flu season approaches.

Cohen got her flu shot on Wednesday at Russell’s Pharmacy & Shoppe in Durham.

“Flu season is starting up right now and flu shots are available everywhere. And we need to make sure we are protecting ourselves from COVID and from flu,” Cohen said.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services said COVID-19 and flu vaccines can be administered at the same time.

“It is absolutely safe to get a flu shot and a COVID shot at the same day. Kill two birds with one stone, save yourself some time,” Cohen said. “We just want to make sure everyone is protected.”

The CDC said the exact timing and duration of flu seasons vary, but influenza activity often begins to increase in October and peaks in February.

There were only seven deaths blamed on the flu in the 2020-21 season as compared to 186 in the 2019-20 season and 203 in 2018-19.

The low number of flu-related deaths was likely from the efforts made to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

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