Life comes with great expectations, milestones, fears, changes, and challenges. Aging is one of those times that can be physically and emotionally taxing. Many older adults, particularly women, are:

  • Caregivers
  • Living with family members
  • Facing financial and housing struggles
  • Having emotional and health problems

Being healthy can make relationships more special, responsibilities more manageable, and life just a little easier and more meaningful. Welcome to EverThrive Illinois, your Champion for Health. Here, you will learn more about your health, preventing severe illnesses, and practicing self-care by getting the flu shot so you can be protected around those you care for and love. You will also find local resources that can support you in living a healthier and more fulfilling life.

What You Must Know About the Flu:
The Flu Is Not Just a Cold

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and sometimes the lungs. Being healthy and having complete protection against it will help you create more laughter and precious moments with those you care for.

Your health risks increase as you age because your immune system weakens, putting you at a higher risk of developing severe complications from the flu. Be aware of this reality and be kind to yourself.

The flu can lead to complications for secondary illnesses, such as pneumonia, that may require hospitalization or increase your chance of having a stroke and a heart attack. Be your advocate and prioritize your health.

The majority of severe flu cases affect people 65 and older. It’s estimated that between 70% and 85% of seasonal flu-related deaths occur in seniors. Similarly, 50% and 70% of seasonal flu-related hospitalizations occur in this age group. Be proactive so you don’t miss out on life’s better moments.

When you’re sick with the flu, you may experience symptoms like fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue. You may also experience vomiting and diarrhea. Be aware of your body, monitor these symptoms closely, and don’t hesitate to ask for help, even if that means seeking medical care.

If you are experiencing the following warning signs while you have the flu, be on your own side, speak up, and seek medical care right away:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • Severe muscle pain
  • Severe weakness or unsteadiness
  • Dizziness or confusion
  • Seizures
  • Fever or cough that comes and goes
  • Not urinating
  • Worsening of a medical condition

What You Must Know About the Flu Shot

You find meaning by supporting and loving others unconditionally. You want to be there for your friends and family, no matter what. But you can’t be there for others if you are not there for yourself first. It is time to focus on your needs and how to stay healthy.

Practicing Self-Care Means Staying Healthy.

Getting vaccinated is a choice you can make today for your health and to ensure everyone's safety. As the Holiday Season approaches, taking care of your health is a priority that will ensure that gathering with loved ones is safe and sound. Remember that immunity from vaccination fully sets in after about two weeks. Plan your flu shot accordingly.

Flu shots help you feel less sick and recover faster if you get infected with the flu. The flu vaccine contains a dead strain of the flu virus to activate your body's natural defenses without giving you the flu. You will not get the flu from the flu shot.

Flu vaccines are updated to keep up with the changing viruses every season. Everyone 6 months of age and older should get an annual flu vaccine to ensure the best possible protection against the flu. If you are 65 years and older, you should get a flu shot, but never a nasal spray or a standard-dose flu vaccine.

It is recommended for those 65 years or older to get a high-dose flu vaccine. Talk with your doctor or pharmacist about what flu vaccine might be best for you.

If you receive a high-dose flu shot, you will likely develop side effects the week after receiving the vaccine. These could include pain, headache, muscle ache, tiredness, and redness or swelling at the injection site. These symptoms typically end within 1 to 3 days.

If you have not received your flu shot yet, it's not too late to get vaccinated. Most people get the flu during the months of December and January. Get your flu shot now.

The flu shot does not protect you against the COVID-19 virus. The COVID-19 vaccines and boosters do not protect you against the flu. Getting vaccinated protects you from both viruses.

Flu Shots Are at Low or No Cost to You.

Not getting a flu shot has its own cost. Have you considered all the medicine you will need to buy and the time away from those you care for if you are sick? Not to mention the money you would need to cover doctor appointments, emergency visits, and hospitalizations. Being sick costs you money, time, and resources. Your health is your wealth. Protect it.

You can get your flu shot at a doctor's office or from your local grocery stores, drug stores, and pharmacies at no cost to you. You have options; choose one.

Flu shots are generally covered for anyone with Medicare Part B. Find your options today.

You don't have to travel far to get a flu shot. Click below to find a location near you.

Other Ways to Protect Yourself From the
Flu and Maintain Your Optimal Health.


Wash your hands often.


Use alcohol-based hand sanitizers.


Cover your mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, and throw the tissue into the trash after you use it.


Cough into your elbow, not your hands.


Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs are spread that way.


Avoid close contact with sick people.


Stay active so you can start feeling energized and refreshed.


Make healthy food choices.


Try to get enough sleep and rest.


Quit smoking and avoid or limit alcohol consumption.


Visit the doctor at least once a year, possibly more depending on your health, for regular health screenings and check-ups.

Image #1
Image #2

We Are Here For You.

By choosing the flu shot, you’re choosing to care for yourself and your loved ones too.

Creating memories with your children and grandchildren and with those in your community is what fills your heart with joy, hope, and aliveness; these moments are priceless. But seeking these times and creating lifetime memories is not possible if you are sick; your health is also invaluable.

Learning about the flu, the flu vaccine, and what you can do to stay healthier is your choice. At EverThrive Illinois, we believe that adequate preventive care, like the flu shot, is important and contributes to a healthier future and a more fulfilling life. We hope that you feel the same way. Here are some additional resources for you:

Resources in Illinois

1. Find a Flu Shot

2. Flu & People 65 Years +

3. Treating Influenza

4. Family & Support Services for Seniors

Medicaid & Medicare

1. Illinois Medicaid

2. Explore Medicare Options

    Your feedback is important to us

    Have you ever gotten the flu shot before?

    Based off of this information, are you considering getting the flu shot?

    Did this page provide the information you needed for an educated decision?