EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — While the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be on the top of everyone’s mind, the flu season is quickly approaching.
According to Immunize El Paso, the peak of flu season in the Borderland is between January and April. However, the time to get vaccinated is between August and September.
“With COVID, it’s kind of changed my perspective that it might be more important for me to do it even though I’m scared,” said El Pasoan Brittany Mostym.
Mostym says she’s scared of needles and has never gotten a flu shot, but this year she says she will. “It’s a precaution that everybody could do just to be safe,” said Mostym.
Although, not everyone feels the same.
“I’ve never gotten the flu shot, I’ve never gotten the flu and I’m not getting any COVID-19 shot either,” said El Pasoan Ava Powell.
Immunize El Paso says because of COVID, it’s even more important that El Pasoans get vaccinated.
“The idea of having a flu season, coupled [with] the COVID-19 pandemic, is a scary one for all of us. As our healthcare resources are already depleted, adding additional need within doctors’ offices and hospitals to get treated on top of that could yield some devastating consequences for our community,” said Dusty Warden, with Immunize El Paso.
The number of COVID-19 related deaths in El Paso has now surpassed the number of flu-related deaths last season.
- 285 COVID-19 deaths as of Aug. 6, 2020.
- 5 Flu-related deaths for the 2018-2019 flu season.
“As we grew in to this late February, early March, the idea was, ‘well the flu kills more people than COVID.’ The flu, unfortunately, kills 36,000 people each year and puts countless thousands in the hospitals and it makes other people ill in the millions. … But that being said, we were proven wrong,” said Warden.
Immunize El Paso says it’s still important that El Pasoans get their flu shot, because El Paso can’t afford to add flu cases on top of the COVID cases.
“If we were to put those two together, we could have a super storm,” said Warden.
Immunize El Paso says the sooner you get your flu shot, the better. Although flu shots are not available at Immunize El Paso yet, they should be available by September.