What Do I Need to Know About Flu Vaccines?

There's never been a more important time to get your flu shot. You can learn about it here. You might also want to know the symptoms of the flu versus COVID-19.

Why should I get the flu shot?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, during 2019 and 2020, the flu vaccine prevented 7.5 million influenza illnesses. It’s one of the most effective ways to prevent the flu and keep you and your family safe.  

Who should get the flu shot?

The CDC recommends that anyone over the age of six months should get a flu shot.

Some people have a higher risk for developing flu-related complications. If you have chronic conditions – such as asthma, heart disease, diabetes or chronic kidney disease – you should make getting the flu shot a high priority. The same is true for people who are 65 and older

When should I get the flu shot?

Early fall is the best time to get your flu shot. Getting vaccinated early is important, because the flu is highly contagious and spreads rapidly.

Getting the shot before the flu season is in full force gives the body a chance to protect itself. It takes about two weeks to be effective, so don't wait. Peak months for the flu season in Michigan are November through April.

Are flu shots covered by my Blue Cross or BCN plan?

If you have an HMO plan, your annual flu shot is free.

If you have a PPO plan without prescription drug benefits, or have a prescription drug benefit that excludes immunizations, your flu shot also comes at no cost and is covered under your medical benefit. 

Make sure you always bring your Blue Cross or BCN member ID card with you to your appointments and pharmacy. 

Can I get reimbursed for a flu shot?

If you’re required to pay for your flu shot, you may be reimbursed. For example, you may need to pay if you don’t have your Blue Cross or BCN member ID card on you when you get your flu shot. 

Where can I get the flu shot?

PPO members

Once you know whether you're covered, you can get vaccinated by:

  • Making an appointment with your doctor
  • Visiting a pharmacy that accepts your plan if you have prescription coverage through us

If you don't have prescription coverage through us, your vaccine may still be covered. You can use your medical coverage and go to an immunizing pharmacy.

To find an immunizing pharmacy in your area: 

1.    Go to Find Care

2.    Scroll to Find a Doctor and log in to your account

3.    Select Doctors & Hospitals

4.    Select Find a Doctor under Find in-network care

5.    Select Places by Type 

6.    Type in Immunization Pharmacy and select the search icon    

HMO members

Blue Care Network HMO members can get free vaccinations two ways:

  • Make an appointment with your primary care physician
  • Visit a pharmacy that accepts your plan

Can I get the flu shot and a COVID shot at the same time?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued guidance stating that flu shots and COVID-19 vaccines can be given at the same time. Even though both vaccines can be given during the same visit, you should follow the recommended schedule for each vaccine.

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