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Preparing for flu season during a global pandemic will be a challenge

Getting your flu shot might not stop COVID-19, but it is a good precaution.

SAN ANGELO, Texas — As the weather begins to change and we prepare for the fall and winter months ahead of us, we must also prepare for flu season.

With so many unknowns about COVID-19, and now with flu season on the horizon, it might leave many people skeptical about getting a flu shot.

However, Shannon Medical Center Employee Manager Kelli Hill said the flu shot is just an extra safety precaution.

"Obviously, there's a pandemic going on and many people are sick in our communities," Hill said. "So, we want to take every precaution that we can to keep people well so getting a flu shot is a great preventative measure for that."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu has resulted in between 9,000,000 and 45,000,000 illnesses. It has as hospitalized more than 800,000 people, and more than 60,000 have died annually since 2010.

Hill dismisses the rumor about getting a flu shot making a person more vulnerable to other illnesses such as COVID-19.

"So that has been proven over and over again that it is a rumor," Hill said. "The CDC has validated that the flu shot can cause some mild side effects, such as headache or malaise, also some soreness."

Hill said just because a person does get those side effects, does not mean it is the flu. While there is no cure for COVID-19, Hill still encourages people to be vigilant in the community.

If a person does not want a flu shot, they need to remember to follow CDC guidelines.

"As far as COVID-19 precautions, those are going to help you the same way with the flu shot just cover your cough and wear a face mask," Hill said.

Hill still wants the community to continue washing hands and keep staying six-feet apart; and if you feel sick, stay home.