CNBC – Only 49% of U.S. adults plan to get their flu shot this flu season, according to a survey conducted by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID).
Even 1 in 5 of those who are at higher risk for influenza-related complications say they won’t get vaccinated.
People who are more likely to have severe outcomes from a flu infection include those over the age of 65, pregnant people, children younger than five years old, and individuals with underlying conditions, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“We know flu vaccination remains the best way to protect yourself and your family from flu,” said Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the CDC, during the NFID’s conference on Tuesday.
Most Americans agree. Nearly 70% believe that getting an annual flu vaccination is the best way to prevent influenza-related deaths and hospitalizations, the NFID found.
And yet many people remain hesitant to get their vaccine.
Instead, more U.S. adults are gravitating towards masking as a form of protection against the flu.
A higher percentage of Americans (58%) plan to mask at least sometimes this flu season than intend to get vaccinated.
Here are some of the top reasons adults gave for not getting vaccinated this season:
- 41% think flu shots don’t work very well
- 39% are concerned about the vaccine’s side effects
- 28% say they never get the flu
- 24% are concerned about getting the flu from the shot
- 20% do not think influenza is a serious illness
“With Covid, people have forgotten about influenza … ”