Yes, you can get a flu shot and COVID vaccine at the same time

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — As flu season approaches, many are wondering if it is possible to get a COVID vaccine and a flu shot at the same time. The answer: yes, you can.

Dr. William Schaffner, a Professor of Infectious Diseases at Vanderbilt, says that getting both shots at the same time is safe, “Well, it certainly is getting to be that time of the year where we need flu vaccine. And I anticipate that we’ll be giving COVID boosters just about at the same time. And so, it is a natural question. Can you get the flu vaccine in one arm and the COVID vaccine in the other? And the answer is yes, you can.”

Getting both vaccines at the same time is safe, but you may notice some soreness the next day. “But be a little careful. Remember, you can get a sore arm from both of these vaccines. So don’t plan a weightlifting contest the next day,” said Dr. Schaffner.

Both the flu and COVID are dangerous respiratory viruses and some groups, like pregnant women, are especially vulnerable. 

“If they get infected with either of those viruses, they may get more seriously ill because their immune system is kind of a little bit suppressed because they’re holding this new baby inside,” said Dr. Schaffner. “And then the other thing is, it also protects also the baby.”

Tracking COVID in Tennessee
📊 COVID-19 cases among TN school-age children
📊 Tennessee’s Current COVID-19 hospitalizations
📊 New COVID-19 cases and deaths reported by month

Just like with COVID, those who are in their teens, 20s, and 30s, are less likely to get severely ill due to the flu, but it can and does happen. “We have each year in the hospital to deal with young people perfectly healthy, perfectly healthy, who got flu, and 48 hours later, they had to be put in the intensive care unit.”

Those who are six months and older can get the flu vaccine while the COVID vaccine is approved for anyone over the age of 12. 

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