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OhioHealth: Flu vaccine numbers lower than last year

The CDC is reporting in its latest data about flu vaccines, vaccines in kids are down by about 6% between 2020 and 2021. OhioHealth says their numbers are down too.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — It's Thanksgiving week and there's a lot to worry about from travel to COVID-19, as well as the flu.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention and OhioHealth both classify the flu right now as low activity. When it comes to flu shot numbers, Dr. Joseph Gastaldo from OhioHealth says they're down. The CDC is reporting in its latest data about flu vaccines, vaccines in kids are down by about 6% between 2020 and 2021.

“Influenza vaccinations right now are actually a little bit lower compared to what they were last year and again I think a lot of it has to do with us talking to people about vaccines in the setting of COVID fatigue, some people also have vaccine fatigue too,” said Dr. Gastaldo.

As for symptoms, Dr. Gastaldo says both COVID-19 and the flu are respiratory diseases and have similar symptoms.

“The symptoms are very much overlapping, especially if you consider fever, shortness of breath, cough. The one symptom that we don't classically safe with influenza is a change in taste or smell,” said Dr. Gastaldo.

Dr. Gastaldo says the best thing you can do, if you're not feeling well, is just stay home.

If you want to take an extra precaution this Thanksgiving and get a COVID-19 home test, Columbus Public Health will be passing them out on Tuesday.

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