OPM and HHS have asked federal agencies to encourage their employees to get the seasonal flu vaccine and to encourage their family members to do so, as well.
“The fact is that flu is dangerous. Each year, millions of Americans of all ages become ill with flu, hundreds of thousands are hospitalized, and tens of thousands die. Flu vaccines are safe and getting vaccinated reduces the risk of getting sick with flu or winding up in the hospital if you do get flu,” a joint memo says.
“By getting an annual flu vaccine, employees can reduce the spread of flu and reduce stress on the healthcare system, as well as keep our entire federal workforce – and country – healthier and stronger during COVID-19,” it says.
It also recommended that employees meanwhile check to make sure they are up to date on their other vaccinations.
“All vaccines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, such as flu vaccines, are covered at no cost to Federal Employees Health Benefits plan members. Most FEHB plans also cover vaccines at pharmacies and retail stores, in addition to doctor’s offices and clinics, with no co-pays when in-network,” it said.