By Mike Kruzman /

In the midst of spiking COVID numbers, the state health department is asking residents to not forget their vaccinations for the flu.

This week is National Influenza Vaccination Week and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, along with the Department of Insurance and Financial Services, is asking Michiganders to get their flu shot while the battle against COVID-19 continues. Flu activity last flu season was very low, likely due to preventive COVID-measures. With the holidays around the corner, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are concerned for this year.

MDHHS Chief Medical Executive Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian says, in a release, that everyone ages 6 months and up is recommended to receive the flu vaccine, and that there is an ample supply among primary care providers and local pharmacies.

The MDHHS reports that the flu most commonly peaks in February and can show significant activity into May, so there is still time. An increase in influenza A viruses has been detected in recent weeks, as well as outbreaks on college and university campuses in several states.

Flu shots are an essential health benefit under the Affordable Care Act and are covered with no out-of-pocket costs by most health plans in Michigan. Last flu season, approximately 3.5-million Michigan residents got the flu vaccine, and the MDHHS is hoping to hit 4-million for this season.

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(Photo: MDHHS)