How Much Is a Flu Shot Without Health Insurance?

How Much Is a Flu Shot Without Health Insurance?

An influenza vaccine, also called a flu shot, can help protect you from several types of flu viruses during flu season and the rest of the year.[1] Most health insurance plans cover the cost of a flu shot, but if you don’t have health insurance, you’ll probably have to pay for it yourself. Prices vary based on what kind of flu shot you get, how old you are, and where you get it. Most of the time, getting a shot won’t cost you more than $60.

Here’s what you need to know about how much a flu shot costs without insurance, as well as how to get a low-cost or free flu shot.

Without insurance, how much does a flu shot cost?

Without health insurance, you will have to pay anywhere from $20 to $95 for a flu shot.

You can get a flu shot in many places, like doctor’s offices, urgent care centers, pharmacies, big box shops, wholesale clubs, and more. Most of the time, there are two kinds of flu shots: one for adults and one for people over 65. But people who are allergic to eggs may also be able to get a flu shot without eggs. Prices and vaccine choices may be different from one state to the next, so it’s a good idea to think about your choices before making an appointment for a flu shot.

Where people without insurance can get cheap flu shots

If you want to save money on a flu shot, you have many choices, such as:

Pharmacies and grocery shops are good places to get vaccinated because they are easy to get to and probably cost less than going to a doctor. Prices can be different in different places, so it’s best to look around for the best deal.

Retailer rewards programs: Members of some store programs can sometimes get savings. Walgreens, for example, gives members of its medication rewards program a 20% discount on flu shots.

Membership warehouse clubs: If you join to a membership warehouse club like Costco or Sam’s Club, you might be able to save money on your flu shot. Flu shots start at just $19.99 at Costco, while they cost $49.99 at CVS.

You might be able to find a deal for a discount on your flu shot online. For example, members of GoodRx can get discounts on flu shots at big stores and pharmacies.

Health offices in each area: Find out if your town or state has low-cost flu shots and how to get them. Your local health department might even work with a local store to make it easy for you to get a flu shot.

How to get flu shots for free if you don’t have health insurance

Those who qualify may be able to get free flu shots. If you don’t have health insurance, here are some things to think about:

Employers: Your company may offer free flu shots by giving them to you at work or by giving you vouchers for free flu shots.

Schools: Some schools and colleges may give free flu shots to students, teachers, and staff, as well as to their families and members of the community.

Veterans Affairs: Most veterans can get free flu shots at health centers or shops near them through Veterans Affairs.

Nonprofits: Free flu shots may be available from some local community groups. For example, the United Way of Central Georgia worked with FamilyWize, a service that helps people save money on prescriptions, to offer free flu shots at Walgreens shops in the area.

why you should get a flu shot

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that everyone over 6 months old should get a flu shot every year. There are different kinds of flu shots, so if you don’t know which one is right for you, you should talk to your doctor or other health care source.

According to the CDC, there are seven main reasons why people of all ages should think about getting a flu shot every year:

Helps keep you from getting the flu: Getting a flu shot can keep you from getting sick from different kinds of the flu virus.

Lessens the harshness of flu symptoms: If you get the flu, a flu shot can make your symptoms less bad.

Getting a flu shot makes it less likely that you’ll have to go to the hospital because you have the flu. The CDC says that flu shots will keep about 105,000 people from going to the hospital between 2019 and 2022.

Helps keep people with health problems safe: If you have heart disease, diabetes, or lung disease that doesn’t go away, getting a flu shot can help keep your health from getting worse if you get the flu.

Reduces health risks during pregnancy: Getting a flu shot while pregnant can keep you from getting the flu and protect your baby from the flu for the first few months of life.

Helps protect children: Flu shots can be given to kids as young as 6 months old to lower their risk of getting a serious flu. A 2022 study by Oxford University Press for the Infectious Diseases Society of America found that flu shots cut by about 75% the chance that a child will get a life-threatening flu.

Protects the community: Getting a flu shot can help protect the people around you, especially babies, young children, older people, and people with long-term health problems.

How much do the other shots cost?

The CDC advises that all adults get the following vaccines in addition to the flu shot:

COVID-19: Vaccines and booster shots that help keep people safe from major COVID-19 cases are free.

Td or Tdap: These vaccines help prevent tetanus infections and are suggested for babies, kids, preteens, teens, and adults. Most health insurance plans cover the cost of this vaccine, but if you don’t have insurance, it can cost between $75 and $95 out of pocket.

When is the right time to get a flu shot?

Before flu season starts in November, most people should get a flu shot in September or October. Protection from the vaccine can wear off over time, so pregnant women in their first or second trimesters and older adults shouldn’t get their flu shot too early. The vaccine may need to be given twice to a child.

How safe is the flu shot?
The CDC agrees that flu shots are safe. In the U.S., hundreds of millions of people have been protected against the flu in the last 50 years. You can’t get the flu from a flu shot, and most people who get one don’t have serious side effects.

How well does the flu shot work?
Yes. The CDC says that getting a flu shot can help you avoid getting the flu and lower your chances of getting very sick or having to go to the hospital if you do get the flu.

How long does the flu shot keep working?

Most of the time, a flu shot will keep you from the flu for the whole season. But some kids might need more than one dose, so it’s important to talk to your doctor.

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