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Flu Resource Center

2022-2023 Flu Season: It’s more important than ever to protect yourself and your family from the flu by getting your flu shot—and getting it early in the season. An annual flu shot protects against the four flu strains most likely in circulation this season. If you get the flu, your flu shot may help reduce the severity of your symptoms. 

Flu causes fever, sore throat, muscle aches and other symptoms. It can be transmitted by coughing, sneezing and close contact with others who have the flu—similar to the transmission of the coronavirus illness, COVID-19. As with COVID-19, severe cases can result in hospitalization and even death.

To protect yourself and those you love from getting the flu, follow the same measures you take now to prevent COVID-19 spread:

  • Wear a mask whenever you are out and about
  • Stay at least six feet away from people you don’t live with, even when masked
  • Wash your hands

Feeling sick?

Flu and COVID-19 viruses share many of the same symptoms. If you experience any flu-like symptoms, avoid contact with others and call your provider’s office for guidance, or use Virginia Mason Franciscan Health Virtual Urgent Care.

COVID-19 information and resources

Learn more about our virtual urgent care option and get care now

Want to know more about the ins and outs of the flu shot? We’ve got you covered.

    • Everyone 6 months and older should get a flu vaccine every season with rare exceptions. Visit the CDC website for more information on who should and should not get the flu shot.
    • People who have a severe allergy to chicken eggs
    • People who have had a severe reaction to an influenza vaccination
    • Children younger than six months of age
    • People who have a moderate-to-severe illness with a fever should wait until they recover to get vaccinated
    • People with a history of Guillain-Barré Syndrome that occurred after receiving influenza vaccine should have their provider help to decide whether the vaccine is recommended for them or not
    • Visit the CDC website for more information on who should and should not get the flu shot
  • We are not offering flu clinics at this time but encourage all eligible patients to get the flu vaccine from a community pharmacy. Flu vaccines are available at Franciscan Pharmacies in Federal Way, Tacoma, and Lakewood (no appointment required). Get your vaccine today and help protect yourself during the flu season.

Wash your hands often

Washing your hands with soap and water is one of the best ways to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others. Handwashing can prevent one in five respiratory infections, such as colds and flu, and one in three diarrhea-related sicknesses.

You can help yourself and your loved ones stay healthy by washing your hands often, especially during these key times when you are likely to get and spread germs:

  • Before, during, and after preparing food
  • Before eating food
  • After using the toilet
  • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
  • Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick with vomiting or diarrhea 

Wash your hands the right way

Washing your hands the right way removes more germs.

Follow these five steps every time:

  1. Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap. 
  2. Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails. 
  3. Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice. 
  4. Rinse your hands well under clean, running water. 
  5. Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.