It’s not too late to get vaccinated

Published: Dec. 20, 2022 at 12:51 PM EST
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AROOSTOOK COUNTY, Maine (WAGM) - As the flu continues to spread throughout the County, health professionals are reminding people, it’s not too late to get your vaccines.

Shawn Anderson, the CEO of Houlton Regional Hospital says, “It’s, still not too late to get an influenza vaccine. It now is the time. If our listeners haven’t been vaccinated yet, now is the time get vaccinated because this is going to be with us for a while.”

Dr. Stephanie Gillis, the Director of Primary Care for Northern Maine Medical Center, says, “They can absolutely get the Covid vaccine and the flu vaccine at the same time. Those don’t need to be separated. There’s a little bit higher risk of some response to the vaccine. Some of those typical vaccine symptoms that we might see, some malaise or tiredness, fatigue, little low grade fever, body ache. If you get both vaccines on the same day, but there’s no contraindication to vaccinate with both. And the flu vaccine seems to be a good match so far this season with the Influenza A that we’re seeing right now. And the Covid booster, even though there have been some new variants and it’s not the BA four, BA five variants that we originally were seeing, there’s still omicron variants and there’s still a good response and good neutralizing antibodies produced from the booster vaccine. So there’s a huge benefit for getting both.”

Dr. Brian Griffin, the Chief Medical Officer at Houlton Regional Hospital says, “Yeah, I agree. That’s the best advice. Do it when you can just get them both then and get it done. Cause you may not get the second. And it’s never too late to get vaccinated. Just do it. And that’s your single best way of avoiding serious illness. I mean, as we found out with Covid, you can still get it with your vaccine, but it’s going to be far less than it would be if you did not get vaccinated.”

Kris Doody, the CEO of Cary Medical Center adds, “And we’ve had many people that have received both vaccine and they did perfectly fine. Some people prefer not to, and that’s okay too. But a number of people have received both at the same time and have done very, very well. The thing to remember though is, if you’ve had covid, there is a waiting period from when you’ve had the Covid to receiving a booster. So, your physician can help you with that, but otherwise, there’s been many people that have had both and they’ve faired very well.”