The Similarities of the Flu & COVID-19

For the upcoming flu season, the influenza vaccine will be critical to reduce the impact of respiratory illness in our communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Because we don’t currently have a way to prevent COVID-19 outside of social distancing, practicing good hygiene and disinfecting commonly used surfaces, it is highly recommended everyone get a flu vaccine this year.

Below are some of the symptoms of COVID-19 and how they compare to flu symptoms:

  • Fever or feeling feverish/chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue (tiredness)
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle pain or body aches
  • Headache
  • Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults

Differences between COVID-19 and Flu

Similarities

Both COVID-19 and the flu have the following symptoms and are spread in similar ways.

  • Both can be transmitted through person to person contact or droplets from coughing, sneezing or talking.
  • Both can be transmitted by someone who isn’t showing signs of being sick or experiencing any symptoms.
  • Both can live on surfaces

Differences

  • COVID-19 and Influenza are different types of viruses that can cause similar symptoms in humans.
  • The Influenza virus  does not live in the air for a certain amount of time.
  • The flu spreads faster than COVID-19 and symptoms appear sooner. Flu symptoms become visible within 1-4 days while COVID-19 can take up to 14 days.
  • COVID-19 is more deadly than the flu.  The mortality rate for the flu is less than 1% of people infected while COVID-19 has a mortality rate of 4%-6% of people infected.
  • The most important difference is – there is a vaccine to prevent the flu!

Visit any pharmacy for a flu shot today, no appointment needed. To keep everyone safe, we have implemented new safety measures this year:

  1. All patients getting a flu shot are required to wear a mask
  2. Please take a moment to complete the intake form here prior to coming to the pharmacy