The Flu + You (+ Your Loved One)
Everyone’s immune system typically weakens with age, making it harder for us to fight infection and disease as we get older.
To help raise awareness of the seriousness of the flu and the importance of flu prevention, actor and ‘70s pop culture icon Lee Majors is joining the Flu + You campaign.
Today, Majors, who is best known for his role on the iconic television show The Six Million Dollar Man, has a new mission: To urge everyone 65 and older and their caregivers to talk to their health care provider about the flu and what can be done to help prevent it, including selection of the most appropriate flu vaccine.
Flu Tips from Lee Majors:
• People 65 and older and their caregivers should not wait for flu season to start to get their annual flu shot.
Get vaccinated as soon as possible when vaccine is available because the body’s immune system and its ability to fight illness decreases with age, meaning older adults are more vulnerable to the flu and its related complications.
• There are a few vaccine options available, and some have been developed for specific stages of life.
In addition to the traditional flu vaccine (which helps protect against three strains of the flu virus), there is a quadrivalent vaccine (which helps protect against four strains), and a higher dose vaccine that is designed specifically for adults aged 65 and older. By improving the production of antibodies in older patients, the higher dose vaccine can provide a stronger immune response to influenza than traditional vaccines.
• The flu can be easily passed from person to person, so it’s important that those who spend time with older adults, such as family and caregivers, also get vaccinated.
An annual flu shot is a Medicare Part B benefit. This means that the vaccine is covered with no copay for Medicare beneficiaries 65 years of age and older. Talk to your health care provider today about the dangers of the flu, the benefits of annual immunization to help protect against the flu, and the best flu vaccine option to meet your needs
See more at: http://www.ncoa.org/improve-health/community-education/flu—you/#sthash.oahqIqO9.dpuf