COVID-19 and the seasonal flu are caused by different viruses, but they are both infectious illnesses that can affect breathing and have similar symptoms.
People have been getting the flu vaccine every year for many years, so it’s not surprising there are questions like the one we got recently from Evelyn.
Evelyn asked: “Will we have to get the covid vaccine every year like the flu shot? Or will that depend on the variants and how strong or quickly they spread?”
We went to Dr. Syed Hussain at Trinity Health for an answer who said we don’t have a definitive answer yet.
“It depends on how the virus evolves and behaves, if there are additional mutations and a variant that becomes the dominant strain. It also depends on how variants react to the three currently authorized vaccines. If one of the dominant strains is resistant to some of the antibodies produced from the vaccines, that would be a big concern, and we would be looking at a new vaccine or a booster dose, which Moderna and Pfizer have already looked into in case we need to do down that route. Only time will tell whether this will become an annual vaccine.”
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