The CMS Office of Minority Health welcomes your participation in promoting observances throughout the year to raise awareness about health issues affecting people across our nation. Share our resources on prevention, health equity, and research about health disparities.
Encourage action this National Influenza Vaccination Week
December 4-8 is National Influenza Vaccination Week. This week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Office of Minority Health (CMS OMH) recognizes the importance of flu vaccinations.
CMS OMH is also highlighting vaccination disparities and encouraging everyone to get their flu shot, which has been proven to reduce the risk of illness, hospitalization, and death.
During the 2021-2022 influenza season, the Centers for Disease Control and prevention (CDC) estimated that influenza was associated with 9 million illnesses, 4 million medical visits, 10,000 hospitalizations, and 5,000 deaths. While everyone who is eligible should receive a flu shot each year, those who are at higher risk of serious complications from the flu (people aged 65 and older, individuals with chronic conditions, pregnant people, and children under age 5), should take extra care to ensure their vaccines are current.
Flu vaccination disparities persist among Black, Hispanic, and American Indian and Alaska Native adults, with less than 43 percent of adults in these communities receiving their flu vaccine during the 2021-2022 season. Additionally, from 2009-2022, flu hospitalization rates were nearly 80 percent higher among Black adults than White adults. In rural communities, flu vaccination rates among individuals enrolled in Medicare Advantage or Medicare Fee-For-Service in 2021 were significantly lower than the national average.
Highlighting the importance of flu vaccines and sharing information with your community is crucial for reducing vaccination disparities. During National Influenza Vaccination Week, we encourage you to take time to review and share the resources below.
Visit our Immunization and Vaccine Resources webpage to view a list of flu resources and learn more about flu vaccines for underserved populations, including materials in additional languages.
Review our Coverage to Care Prevention Resources to learn about the services available at no cost to adults under most health coverage, including vaccines. Resources are available in 8 different languages.
Explore CMS’s flu webpage for information, videos, and resources about the flu.