Time for Kids: How early kids should start getting the flu shot, and when to get it every year

MADISON, Wis. — We’ve talked a lot about COVID-19 and the vaccine for kids, but other respiratory illnesses continue to spread in southern Wisconsin, and that includes the flu.

SSM Health Physician Danielle Mitchell says the flu vaccination process for kids should start within a year of being born.

“The flu vaccine actually starts when we’re about six months of age,” says Mitchell, “and at that time there’s actually two flu vaccines that are required, separated by a short period of time. To achieve an immune response. Then thereafter, they are yearly with what we call our flu season. As we start to change into winter weather patterns, much like we’re seeing right now in Wisconsin, where weather is getting colder, we also start to see more people going indoors. That’s when we start to see a higher transmission with regards to upper respiratory illnesses, particularly viruses and bacteria.”

Based on the flu season, it’s recommended that people start getting the shot around mid-October, but the flu shot is available through February or March.

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