September 03, 2022

Can I Get a COVID-19 Omicron Booster and Flu Vaccine at the Same Time This Fall?

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With the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) authorizing new COVID-19 vaccine boosters that target the Omicron variant of the coronavirus, the natural question is whether the boosters can be combined with the annual flu vaccine for a one-stop shop of sorts?

The short answer is yes, but there are potential side effects to know about.

Is it Safe to Get Both Vaccines at the Same Time?

Last year, the CDC recommended against combining the vaccines, but after more research was done, the agency changed its stance in May. Doctors say that other vaccines do not interfere with the immune response of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Researchers also wanted to make sure it was accurately tracking COVID-19 vaccine side effects and not potential side effects of mixing two shots or from a different vaccine altogether.

Will Side Effects Be Worse?

While both shots are safe to get at the same time, you may feel the effects of each one. You probably know by now whether you get a sore arm from each shot, so if you do, expect that will be the case if you get one in each arm.

Experts also say that it’s possible to feel fatigued for two to three days as your immune system works to process what’s entered your system.

You Can Wait if You Prefer

If you’re worried about side effects, you can space the vaccines out. Just be aware that the CDC recommends getting the COVID-19 booster immediately (as long as you haven’t had the coronavirus or a recent booster in the last two months), and it’s also recommended to get the flu vaccine by the end of October. Both vaccines take about 10 to 14 days to give you as much protection as possible, so it’s advised that you are vaccinated before the winter months roll around.

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