National Influenza Vaccination Week is December 5–9
Each year, HIV.gov recognizes National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW) to help raise awareness about the importance of flu vaccination for the HIV community. Observed December 5–9 this year, NIVW is a nationwide call to action to encourage everyone 6 months and older to get their annual flu shot, especially young children and others at higher risk. The more people vaccinated against flu, the more people are protected from flu.
Vaccination is particularly important for people who are at higher risk of developing serious flu complications, including young children. Millions of children get sick with flu every year, and thousands will be hospitalized. Since flu viruses are constantly changing and protection from vaccination decreases over time, getting a flu vaccine every year is the best way to prevent flu. Flu vaccines are the only vaccines that protect against flu and are proven to reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalization, and death.
Vaccination in December or later is still beneficial, particularly as flu activity is high and continues to increase across the country. Vaccines are particularly important for people who are most vulnerable to developing serious flu complications, including people with HIV—especially those with very low CD4 counts or who are not on treatment—and other health conditions. In fact, in past flu seasons, 9 out of 10 adults hospitalized for flu had at least one underlying medical condition.
Many Vaccine Options
For the 2022–2023 season, CDC recommends use of any licensed, age-appropriate flu vaccine. These include:
- Injectable flu vaccines, or flu shots. These include:
- Flu shots that are made with inactivated viruses.
- One flu shot that is made without influenza viruses.
- A live attenuated influenza vaccine, which is given by nasal spray. (Note: People with HIV should receive the flu shot rather than the nasal spray.)
There are many flu vaccine options, and CDC does not recommend any one vaccine over another. Different vaccines are approved for different groups of people.
- Some flu shots are approved for use in children as young as 6 months old and others are approved for use in adults 65 years and older.
- Flu shots also are recommended for pregnant people and people with certain chronic health conditions.
- The nasal spray flu vaccine is approved for people from age 2 to 49 who are not pregnant. People who are pregnant and people with certain medical conditions should not receive the nasal spray flu vaccine.
Getting a flu vaccine is the best way for everyone to protect themselves and their loved ones from flu. Join the nationwide call to action with resources, messages, and activities from CDC’s Digital Media Toolkit and join the conversation online with #FightFlu.