Problem Solvers: October is prime flu shot time, doctors say

Problem Solvers

DENVER (KDVR) — Flu shots are in high demand and some clinics in the Denver metro are already reporting a short supply. But doctors say waiting until October could provide the best immunity.  

Health care workers across Colorado and throughout the Northern Hemisphere are preparing for the battle of two respiratory illnesses this flu season.

“You want to really be protected when flu is most common,” said Dr. Scott Joy of Englewood Primary Care. “That’s really November through late February, March [in Colorado].”

Joy told the Problem Solvers he will get his flu shot in mid-October. To ensure immunity lasts as long as we need it, doctors, overall, are pointing to October as the best time.

“Everybody wants to get their flu shot right now,” said Dr. Manuel Rodriguez at Southeast Denver Pediatrics.

Rodriguez says there has been an overwhelming demand for the influenza vaccine at his clinic. There is currently a limited supply at his location. Fires in the Western United States are to blame for an interruption in the vaccine supply line, but Rodriguez expects a shipment to arrive later in the week ahead of the incorporation of a drive-thru flu shot clinic at Southeast Denver Pediatrics.

“It is good that everybody is taking this seriously as they should,” Rodriguez said.

It can be difficult for scientists to predict how severe or mild the flu season will be. However, people south of the equator are giving us some clues.

“The whole Southern Hemisphere has really seen a decrease in the number of influenza cases,” Joy explained.

To make the season even milder, doctors are encouraging COVID-19 prevention recommendations such as washing hands frequently, maintaining social distancing and wearing facial coverings.

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