GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) Flu season is up ahead and health officials are urging everyone to get a flu shot. Because as Local 5 found out, in the age of coronavirus you need to protect yourself from influenza.

Health officials know in the coming months influenza will circulate within Northeast Wisconsin during this age of coronavirus.

“We don’t know how influenza and coronavirus are going to act together,” said Carol Bess from Bellin Health, who is urging everyone to get a flu shot.

“It’s always important, every year it’s important that we get a flu shot. Now it’s even more so, because we have another virus circulating, coronavirus,” Bess said.

Medical experts say with coronavirus in the community it’s even more important to be proactive and take measures to keep yourself as healthy as possible. And this infection prevention team leader, says the flu shot can make a difference.

“I would think that any type of illness that you have along with COVID could potentially cause more severe illness,” Bess said “It may not 100 percent prevent people from getting influenza, but it will decrease your risk tremendously.”

Bess says widespread use of the vaccine could prevent hospitals from seeing even more patients presenting the same symptoms as COVID-19, which in itself requires medical staff to use even more precious PPE.

“It’s not always easy and available to get,” said Bess.

But she says the flu shot is and that vaccine is available now.

“We are getting shipments in already, we have some vaccine,” she said.

And Bess urges all to protect themselves during this world wide pandemic.

“So the sooner you get vaccinated, the better,” Bess said.

Flu season can start as early as October and usually peaks between December and March.