Expert: It is important to get vaccinated against the flu as well

Prof. Nadav Davidovitch of Ben Gurion University: There is no problem with getting both COVID-19 and flu vaccine together.

Shimon Cohen ,

COVID-19 vaccine
COVID-19 vaccine

Prof. Nadav Davidovitch, director of the school of public health at Ben Gurion University, spoke to Arutz Sheva on Sunday about the need to get the flu shot even amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Like last year, we need to prepare for winter, and in addition to the COVID-19 vaccines, we also need to get vaccinated against the flu," said Prof. Davidovitch, who stressed that "these are two different viruses. We know that there are cases of influenza, especially of type A, that have already reached the country and caused illness and even hospitalizations."

"Last year there were almost no cases of the flu. Part of this is due to the lockdowns and masks that affect all respiratory and infectious illnesses. This year we recommend getting vaccinated, you can get both vaccines together. Beyond that it is important to maintain hygiene, not to go sick to work, not to send sick children to schools. These things help deal with both COVID-19 and the flu. Especially those who are at high risk, it is important that they get vaccinated," he continued.

In this context of the connection between the two vaccines, Prof. Davidovitch noted that there have been studies that have suggested that the flu vaccine provides some protection against COVID-19 as well. "The mechanism is not really clear, but we need to get the two vaccines. Last year we were in the third wave, luckily we did not have a high flu morbidity but no one assures us that this will happen this year so we must prepare, and vaccinations are very important along with strengthening the health system, which is very important. It is important that this issue is resolved because there is a lot of pressure on the system."

On reports that people who were vaccinated against the flu for several years in a row showed greater resistance to COVID-19, Davidovitch said that indeed "there are statistics that show that those who were vaccinated against the flu gave them statistical protection from COVID-19. Are these people more careful or is their behavior different? These are things that were tested in the study, but I recommend getting vaccinated against both the flu and COVID-19. This protection was not complete protection. They are still trying to find out why."

"These are two viruses that cause a very serious illness that can lead to death and the vaccine is the most effective thing," Davidovitch stressed again, adding that apart from the vaccine "the correct behavior of masks indoors against viral infection, be it influenza or coronavirus."