Former Philly mayor receives first flu shot, encourages others to do same

Justin Udo
October 30, 2018 - 1:53 pm
Nutter Flu shot

Justin Udo | KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- Former Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter is encouraging folks to take a critical preventative step against a viral infection that kills thousands every year, and he's leading by example.

Tuesday marked the first time the 60-year-old Nutter ever got a flu shot.

"I mistakenly thought that I didn't need one," Nutter said. "I was much younger, I'm running around, I feel good. The reality is everyone should get a flu shot, and especially those who are a little older like myself.

While getting his shot at the West Philadelphia Senior Center, he encouraged others to get one, as well.

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Nutter noted that 43 percent of Philadelphians 60 years and older do not get a flu shot, according to the Clover Health Flu Shot Monitor, which is something he says is necessary as people age and their immune systems weaken.

"In Philadelphia, many senior citizens of color are not getting the flu shot at as high a rate as maybe some other people in the broader community," he said.

It's estimated that 80,000 Americans died of the flu and its complications last winter, a number Nutter wants to see drop.

"Really try to knock down some of the myths that go with getting a flu shot," the former mayor said. "It's not going to make you sick. It doesn't really hurt. It's easily accessible, and it really is good for you.

Nutter's encouragement to get the shot comes as officials for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say there is a high chance of a flu pandemic this year.