63% of seniors plan to get flu vaccine, survey finds

Only 63 percent of Americans over age 60 intend to get a flu shot this season, according to survey results from Clover Health's annual Flu Shot Monitor survey.

The survey was carried out by Wakefield Research, which interviewed 1,000 adults ages 60 and older throughout the U.S. The survey was conducted from Sept. 18 through Sept. 28, 2018.

Here are seven survey results to know:

1. Thirty-five percent of seniors did not receive a flu shot in the 2017-18 flu season.

2. Eight percent of seniors who caught the flu last year do not plan on getting a flu shot this year.

3. Of the individuals not planning on receiving a flu shot, 43 percent are concerned the shot will make them sick, 35 percent don't think flu shots are effective, 35 percent don't think the shot is necessary or that they will contract the flu, and 22 percent do not like shots.

4. About 64 percent of white respondents said they plan on getting a flu shot, compared to 56 percent of nonwhite respondents.

5. About 74 percent of seniors with a household income of $75,000 or more plan on getting a flu shot, followed by 65 percent of seniors from a household earning $35,000 to $74,000 and 54 percent of seniors earning less than $35,000.

6. About 60 percent of seniors without an undergraduate degree plan on getting a flu shot, compared to 70 percent of respondents who graduated from college.

7. Seniors 80 years and older are most likely to get a flu shot this year (75 percent), followed by seniors ages 70 to 79 (69 percent) and seniors ages 60 to 69 (60 percent).

"The flu is a deadly-serious issue, and seniors are one of the most vulnerable populations during flu season,” Kumar Dharmarajan, MD, chief scientific officer at Clover Health, said in a press release. "It's concerning to see that so many people in this at-risk demographic do not intend to get vaccinated. Not only are these older adults putting themselves at risk, but also their friends and family members. While there are a lot of scary myths around getting a flu shot, the real danger is contracting the illnes." 

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