- Influenza is a serious disease caused by a virus. Influenza can make you feel miserable! Fever, cough, shaking chills, body aches, and extreme weakness are common symptoms.
- You can catch influenza from people who cough, sneeze, or even just talk around you. It is very contagious.
- Tragically, every year infants, children, teens, and adults die from influenza. Influenza is very unpredictable. No one knows how deadly influenza will be each year. Even if you have a mild case of influenza, you can still pass the virus on to your friends, family, and coworkers who could get very sick or even die.
- Influenza is most dangerous for people with health conditions like heart and lung disease, the very young and very old, and during pregnancy. But anyone can become seriously sick from influenza—even young, healthy people.
- Vaccination is the most effective step you can take to be protected from this serious disease.
Influenza Vaccine Schedule
Every person, beginning at age 6 months and continuing throughout their lifetime, should receive an annual vaccination against influenza.
Find fact sheets, resources, multimedia, and more for parents and children from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
A yearly flu vaccine is the best way to protect your child from flu and its potentially serious complications. Learn more about the flu and vaccines from CDC. A Spanish-language version is also available.
Up-to-date information about vaccination services in your area is brought to you by the Department of Health & Human Services, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Boston Children’s Hospital. Note: As of December 2023, the site is offering location information only for COVID-19 and influenza vaccines.
The doctor said to keep her hydrated. But all children are not alike, some, like Amanda, are at risk for extreme reactions to the flu and other diseases.Read more.
The parents of Emily Lastinger recount the devastating loss of their young daughter to influenza.Read more.
Diane and Mike McGowan’s healthy 15-year-old son, Martin, died from influenza-related complications in 2005. “One flu shot could have saved his life,” said Diane. “As his mother, I wish that he had been vaccinated.”Read more.
This educational and compelling video conveys the importance of receiving the influenza (flu) vaccine. These three families all share their story with the hopes of educating other parents about the importance of vaccination for influenza, more commonly known as the flu. They have experienced tremendous trial, loss, and hardship and their lives have been forever changed. This video tells the stories of Emily Lastinger, Chloe Kramer, and Billy Cary. Hopefully, by hearing their stories, these brave families can help other parents and individuals understand the seriousness of the flu and the importance of getting vaccinated.
People of any age can feel a bit anxious about getting a shot. Some may be so anxious that they avoid vaccination…even when they know it’s important. Learn more about simple ways to help any child or adult feel better and more confident when getting vaccinated.