Cleveland Clinic Study Says Flu Vaccine Does Not Increase COVID-19 Risk

A new study from Cleveland Clinic found getting vaccinated for the flu does not increase your risk of contracting COVID-19 or your chances of complications or death from the disease.

The study, published in the Journal of Clinical and Translational Science, also revealed the seasonal flu vaccine is an important tool to protect your health during the upcoming “twindemic” —the collision of the flu and COVID-19.

According to Science Magazine, scientists compared 13,000 patients who tested for COVID-19 at Cleveland Clinic and found those who had the 2019 vaccine had no variance in incidence or severity than the patients who were not vaccinated.

“Our findings suggest that we should proceed as usual with our vaccination strategy from global influenza this flu season,” said Dr. Joe Zein, a pulmonologist and one of the researchers. “Getting the flu vaccine remains the best safeguards against the influenza — both for yourself and people around you.”

Statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show during the 2019-2020 U.S. flu season there were as many as 56,000 cases, requiring up to 740,000 hospitalizations. The flu might have caused the deaths of 62,000 Americans.

According to The Seattle Times, as the flu season collides with COVID-19 this fall, getting the flu vaccine is more important than ever.

“I’m worried about the whole kit and caboodle and how confusing it might be,” said Dr. John Lynch, a board-certified physician and medical director of Harborview’s Infection Control at the University of Washington Medicine. “That’s why getting a flu shot this year is more important than ever — not only to keep you and your family and the community safe from flu, but also to keep people with these other COVID-like illnesses out of doctor’s offices and emergency departments.”

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