The term “herd immunity” may sound like a concept reserved for the cattle many people eat. But it also refers to humans as the collective protection of a community to any given disease.
Vaccines.org explains that “when a critical portion of a community is immunized against a contagious disease, most members of the community are protected against that disease because there is little opportunity for an outbreak.”
Considering how diverse Wayne State is and how students commute from every corner of the state, having a herd immunity is even more critical for campus health.
According to the CDC, only about 40% of adults in the United States aged 18 and older receive their flu shot each year.
Even with less than half of adults getting a flu shot, in the 2015-2016 flu season, these immunizations prevented 5 million flu illnesses, prevented 2.5 million flu-related medical visits and prevented 71,000 flu hospitalizations – enough to fill every registered hospital bed in the state of Texas. So, imagine the widespread benefits if more people received their flu shot.
About a year ago, The South End published an article on our behalf in order to debunk myths about flu immunizations. The article relates to these flu shot questions:
- Can you get the flu from getting a flu shot?
- Does being young and healthy prevent you from getting the flu without a flu shot?
- You got the flu shot before and still got the flu, so does that mean the immunization doesn’t work?
- If you received the flu vaccine last year, do you still need it this year?
- Does having a healthy diet and exercise regimen mean you don’t need a flu shot?
Even though some young adults may be young, healthy and have the metabolism of a hummingbird, no one is guaranteed to be flu-free during any given season.
If for no other reason, you should get a flu shot to protect others around you.
Vaccines.org tells us that when those around them are immunized, “even those who are not eligible for certain vaccines—such as immunocompromised individuals—get some protection because the spread of contagious disease is contained.”
Chances are, you live with people you care about – roommates, parents, siblings, grandparents, etc. Any of these people may be particularly susceptible to the virus. If you catch the flu, you can pass it to anyone and their health could be seriously compromised.
Every student at WSU, whether they are an undergraduate or graduate student, at main campus, a satellite campus or online only, are all eligible for a flu shot at no-out-of-pocket cost.
The Campus Health Center offers flu shots for no out-of-pocket cost to all WSU students, which means that CHC will bill your insurance if you have it, but you will not be charged for the flu shot.
You can make an appointment Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. by calling Campus Health at 313-577-5041, or swing by the Mort Harris Recreation and Fitness Center lobby for one of our upcoming winter clinics:
- Monday, Jan. 23 from 4-8 p.m.
- Thursday, Feb. 2 from 12-4 p.m.
- Wednesday, Feb. 8 from 4-8 p.m.
Thanks to your help, WSU was recently named the winner of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services College & University Flu Challenge for the third year in a row!
If you haven’t received your free flu shot yet, please come and do so. If you already have and have not yet completed the survey, help us report our flu coverage by completing this 20-second, four question survey.