With a third COVID-19 shot, also known as a booster shot, being recommended against the battle of COVID-19, the possibility of people needing yearly booster shots is on the horizon. New research shows it may be a good idea to combine flu and COVID vaccines into one shot.
According to the CDC, you are able to get both the flu and COVID vaccine in the same visit, but it takes two separate needles.
Combining the two shots could make it easier for people to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and the flu.
“It would make it so much simpler where, you know it’s a one-stop-shop, where you can take care of everything and not have to come back or make a separate appointment sometime in the future," said Marlon Mansour, who was visiting San Luis Obispo County.
Dr. Robert Schooley with UC San Diego Health said people who have time constraints or difficulty managing multiple vaccine appointments could benefit from a combined shot.
“If you separate them, and you end up having to make separate appointments, or the schedules are different the chances you’re going to get both taken care of are much lower," said Dr. Schooley.
A study published in the Lancet journal on January 31st followed 300 people that were split into three groups.
One group was given just the flu vaccine, the second group just mRNA COVID-19 booster, and the third group was given a mixture of the two. The study found people who got the mixed vaccine had just as many antibodies against COVID as people who received just the booster shot.
The same results were reflected with the flu vaccine group. Other data found that all three groups had similar side effects, and no serious reactions were reported. Many said they would be open to the idea of a combined shot as more research is done.
“I’d say just off of personal experience, it’s something I would be comfortable with. Of course, like most people I think with research more that you guys put out there and promote and get the positive effects, I definitely would be more comfortable taking it," said Claudia Salina, who is still considering this idea.
“Much more convenient, you know the first priority is always safety, so you always want to make sure everything has been trialed before it happens," said Alexus Councehooker, who is open to a combo shot.
Moderna reported working on a combined COVID-19 and flu vaccine and hope to have it ready by winter of 2023.