Back to Top Skip to main content

MHS immunization experts will answer questions about flu vaccine

Soldier giving another soldier a flu shot A hospital corpsman prepares a sailor's arm before administering a vaccine at the Navy Medical Readiness and Training Command, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, immunization clinic. (Photo by Macy Hinds)

Recommended Content:

Immunizations | Preventive Health | Public Health | Coronavirus

Active duty service members who received the flu vaccination anywhere other than a military treatment facility should follow their service rules to ensure the flu shot is annotated in their health records.

With influenza season arriving while the coronavirus is still in circulation, health care experts are worried about the potential for a perfect storm of illness. That's why experts within the Military Health System are stating that it's more important than ever this year to get the seasonal flu vaccine.

Three Military Health System immunization experts will answer beneficiaries' questions about the flu vaccine during a "Chat with TRICARE" real-time event, 3 to 4 p.m. EDT Thursday, Sept. 17, on the TRICARE Facebook page.

Participating are Air Force Col. (Dr.) Tonya S. Rans, chief of the Immunization Healthcare Division; Air Force Lt. Col. (Dr.) Ruth Brenner, deputy chief of the division; and Ann Morse, a family nurse practitioner and registered nurse at IHD’s North Atlantic Region Vaccine Safety Hub’s Satellite Office, Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, Virginia.

"Adding influenza vaccination to social distancing and masking will lower your risk of contracting two potentially serious respiratory diseases close together – which could very much worsen your outcome," said Dr. Jay Montgomery, medical director of the IHD's North Atlantic Region Vaccine Safety Hub.

"Getting the vaccine also means you're less likely to potentially expose yourself to COVID-19 by sitting in an urgent-care facility or emergency room waiting to have your flu symptoms treated," he said.

An annual flu vaccine is mandatory for all active-duty service members, Montgomery noted. He and other health care experts recommend that, generally, everyone 6 months and older should get it.

"The flu can be associated with serious illnesses, hospitalizations, and deaths," Montgomery said, particularly among older adults, very young children, pregnant women, and people of all ages with certain chronic medical conditions.

Children should be immunized even if schools don’t fully re-open, Montgomery said. "School isn't the only place where children can come in contact with viruses and bacteria that cause them to get sick," he said. "Playgrounds and grocery stores are also examples of exposure locations."

Providers' offices and immunization clinics have taken steps to protect people from COVID-19 exposure while getting a flu shot, Montgomery added. Those steps include modified appointment scheduling, physical distancing, and frequent cleaning of surfaces.

Brenner, the division's deputy chief, said the flu vaccine is likely to be available at military medical treatment facilities starting at the end of September. Supplies will continue on a rolling basis throughout the fall and winter. Beneficiaries should check with their provider or immunization clinic to be sure the vaccine is available before going to the MTF. This step will reduce unnecessary visits.

For beneficiaries interested in participating in the live Q&A, MHS experts offer the following guidelines:

  • Don't post personally identifiable information.
  • Don't refer to any specific health conditions or names of other individuals.
  • Stay on topic, be respectful, and tell the truth.
  • Add value to the conversation.
  • Don't spam by sending irrelevant or unsolicited messages.

More information about participating in the live chat can be found on the MHS social media webpage.

You also may be interested in...

DHA contributes to COVID-19 vaccine effort

Article
12/16/2020
Vaccine bottles

While Pfizer’s vaccine is being distributed to all U.S. jurisdictions for administration, several more candidates are in development and clinical trials continue to be conducted simultaneously with pharmaceutical partners.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit | COVID-19 Toolkit

COVID-19 Vaccine Headed to NMC San Diego and NH Camp Pendleton

Article
12/15/2020
Gloved hands preparing vaccine for transportation

[T]he first doses of the vaccine will be given to frontline health care workers and first responders, including emergency medical services personnel, security forces, and other essential personnel.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

Frontline health care workers among first in DOD for COVID-19 vaccine

Article
12/15/2020
Man getting vaccine

"This is a very important day, not just for the Department of Defense, but for our nation," Miller said before getting his vaccination.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

National Guard and Reservists doing their part to fight COVID-19

Article
12/14/2020
Military personnel performing nasal swabs of people in a row of cars

“We can do a thousand tests in just a couple hours,” Keller said. It was an example of ingenuity taking place all over the country, with members of the Military Health System partnering with civilian hospitals and clinics.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

COVID-19 Convalescent plasma collection continues

Article
12/14/2020
Three units of CCP laying on a table

CCP has a one-year shelf life, so collected units will begin to expire in 2021.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Convalescent Plasma Collection Program

Hepburn: DOD role in Operation Warp Speed was ‘transformative’

Article
12/11/2020
Medical technician getting a syringe ready to give a vaccine

The FDA announced on Dec. 8 that its review of the Pfizer vaccine found it to be safe and efficacious.

Recommended Content:

COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Operation Warp Speed Vaccine Trials | Coronavirus

Deputy defense secretary stresses team approach in battling COVID

Article
12/10/2020
Soldier wearing mask, standing at computer monitors in an office building

The Military Health System has played an important role implementing the National Defense Strategy, Norquist said.

Recommended Content:

MHS Transformation | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Health Readiness

DOD Officials Announce Distribution Plan for Initial COVID-19 Vaccine

Article
12/10/2020
Image of Mr. McCaffery speaking at a podium at the Pentagon

DOD is expected to receive around 44,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine in the initial phase.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts

DoD COVID 19 Vaccine Distribution Plan and Population Schema

Publication
12/10/2020

Regarding the initial COVID-19 vaccination rollout, Defense Department officials announced a phased and coordinated strategic plan for distributing and administering the initial COVID-19 vaccines.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine

MHS leaders discuss future of military medicine during AMSUS panel

Article
12/9/2020
Military personnel, wearing masks, standing in a line in front of flags

For Dingle, readiness is the key issue during the transition.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus | Convalescent Plasma Collection Program | MHS Transformation

DOD Announces COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Plan

Article
12/9/2020
Soldier wearing mask, sitting in front of computer monitors

The Department prioritizes DOD personnel to receive the vaccine based on CDC guidance.

Recommended Content:

Public Health | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine

Malmstrom AFB airmen battle COVID-19, execute the mission

Article
12/8/2020
Soldier wearing protective gear leaning into a car to chat with other soldier

"The whole point of public health is to prevent any type of spread."

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus

Pandemic underscores MHS’ need for reform, McCaffery tells AMSUS

Article
12/8/2020
Army soldier gets nose swab

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the MHS had embarked on reforms and initiatives to improve its medical support to the armed services.

Recommended Content:

MHS Transformation | Coronavirus | COVID-19 Vaccine Efforts | Operation Warp Speed Vaccine Trials | Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine

Executive Order on Ensuring Access to United States Government COVID-19 Vaccines

Policy

This EO outlines who should receive priority access to COVID-19 vaccines developed in the United States or procured by the United States Government (“United States Government COVID-19 Vaccines”).

DOD continues to increase COVID-19 test capacity

Article
12/7/2020
Technician wearing gloves putting a sample into a container

In March as the first wave of the pandemic spread, there were only 15 testing sites able to perform 1,000 tests per week.

Recommended Content:

Coronavirus
<< < 1 2 3 4 5  ... > >> 
Showing results 31 - 45 Page 3 of 51

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing. Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.