February 7, 2024

To stay well, get vaccinated and practice healthy habits

Cases of flu, COVID-19, and RSV continue to spread in our communities. Here’s how to protect yourself and others.

Staying active, eating well, getting enough sleep — and being up to date on your vaccinations — can help keep you healthy.

It’s common for seasonal viruses to surge in the winter. If you find yourself getting sick every winter, you’re not alone.

Hospitalizations due to the flu, COVID-19, and RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) are on the rise. And, it’s possible to get sick with more than one virus at the same time.

Protect yourself and your family by getting vaccinated.

It’s important to get all vaccines recommended by your doctor. Flu shots can reduce flu-related doctor visits by 60%, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Seasonal vaccination gives you the best protection against the flu. It also can make your flu symptoms less severe if you become infected,” said Craig Robbins, MD, physician co-lead for Kaiser Permanente’s national vaccination program.

Where to get vaccinated

Getting a vaccine is quick and easy — and not just for the flu.

“It’s also important to get the updated COVID-19 vaccine, even if you’ve been vaccinated for COVID-19 before,” said Dr. Robbins. “The updated COVID-19 vaccine provides the best protection against severe illness and hospitalization from more recent COVID-19 strains.”

Flu shots and COVID-19 vaccinations are available to Kaiser Permanente members at no cost at Kaiser Permanente facilities by visiting kp.org/flu and kp.org/covidvaccine.

Other ways to protect yourself and others

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds. It’s one of the best ways to prevent spreading germs and keep yourself and those around you safe.
  • Strengthen your immune system by sleeping 7 to 8 hours a day, eating a healthy diet, and getting your body moving.

Learn more about respiratory infections and how to get care on kp.org.