Why haven't your kids had a flu shot this year?

One third of Americans opt out, but flu season can be deadly

By Mary Elizabeth Williams

Senior Writer

Published November 21, 2018 2:00PM (EST)


This week Salon introduces its questions of the day, where we invite you to lead the conversation.

Last year's flu season was historically lethal — with a shocking nearly 50,000 more flu related deaths than average. Part of the reason is the persistence and adaptability of viruses, but another is the low percentage of people who actually get the vaccine. A new report from C.S. Mott Children's Hospital reveals that nearly a third of US parents don't intend to get their children a flu shot. Reasons cited included "concern about side effects, that it doesn't work very well and that their currently healthy child does not need to be vaccinated."

Have you and your family gone for a flu vaccine this year? Why or why not?

By Mary Elizabeth Williams

Mary Elizabeth Williams is a senior writer for Salon and author of "A Series of Catastrophes & Miracles."

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Flu Parenting Vaccination Vaccines