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Flu and COVID-19 Booster Vaccines at Mass General Brigham

A flu vaccine protects you from getting the flu and can also reduce your risk from flu complications. We also recommend you stay up to date on your COVID-19 boosters, including the updated COVID-19 boosters if you are eligible.

man receiving a flu shot on his arm from clinician

Why is the flu vaccine important?

A flu vaccine makes it less likely that you will get the flu. A flu shot may not prevent you from getting the flu completely. But getting a flu shot reduces the risk of infection, severe disease, death, and hospitalization.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that everyone ages six months and older should get a flu vaccine. There are different types of flu vaccines. Some flu vaccines are meant for people who are 65 years and older. If you are 65 years and older, you should get these vaccines, if available.

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health requires the flu vaccine for all students ages 6 months or older who attend child care, pre-school, and K-12 schools in Massachusetts. Additionally, students under 30 attending post-secondary schools, with limited exceptions.

How much does the flu vaccine cost?

  • Health insurance companies are required to cover flu vaccines without charging a copayment or coinsurance. But they may require you to receive the vaccine at a specific place. Be sure to check your insurance company’s requirements.
  • If you do not have insurance, please call the clinic where you will be getting the flu vaccine to talk about what it will cost.

Do I also need to get the updated COVID-19 booster?

In addition to getting your flu shot, we encourage you to stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccination including the updated COVID-19 boosters if you are eligible. The updated booster will protect you against the original COVID-19 strain and the omicron variant. Find more information about the updated booster in our COVID-19 vaccine FAQs.

Can I get the flu vaccine and the COVID-19 vaccine or booster together?

Yes, you can get a flu shot any time even if you recently received a COVID vaccine. You can even get both vaccines on the same day. Some clinics will offer flu shots and the updated COVID-19 booster together.

Where can I get a flu vaccine or COVID-19 vaccine or booster?

There are many places to get a flu vaccine or updated COVID booster. You should get your flu vaccine where it is most convenient for you.

Please note: Some places may only offer the flu vaccine to patients of certain ages or may not have the vaccines for patients 65 and older available.

Local Pharmacy

Visit a local pharmacy to obtain your flu vaccine or COVID-19 vaccine or booster.

Primary care provider’s office

Call your primary care provider (PCP) or message them through Mass General Brigham Patient Gateway to find out how to get your flu vaccine.

Mass General Brigham locations

Patients can schedule a flu shot at some locations across Mass General Brigham. You can find and schedule an appointment on Patient Gateway

Can I get the flu from the flu vaccine?

The flu shot cannot cause the flu. Flu shots either contain inactivated (“killed”) flu virus or parts of the virus.

I don’t get sick. Why do I need the flu shot?

When you get the flu shot, you are not only protecting yourself. You are protecting everyone else by preventing the spread of the flu, and this includes our patients and your family, friends, and community. 

Why do I have to get the flu shot every year?

Immunity from the flu vaccine can wear off. In addition, the flu virus strains circulating can change from year to year, so you need an updated flu shot each fall.

Find more information about the flu and flu vaccine on the CDC’s website.

Updated December 15, 2022