During National Influenza Vaccination Week, the American College of Physicians Urges Adults to Get Vaccinated

PHILADELPHIA December 1, 2023 – In recognition of National Influenza Vaccination Week (Dec. 4-8), the American College of Physicians (ACP), representing internal medicine physicians, urges adults to make it a priority to get vaccinated as the influenza season, holiday gatherings, and winter weather are here, along with the continued presence of COVID-19 and respiratory syncytial virus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) established the National Influenza Vaccination Week in 2005 as a reminder that the influenza season isn’t just around the holidays but throughout the winter into early spring.

The CDC says that cumulative influenza-associated hospitalization rates for those ages 18 and older have been rising since early October. Although the timing, intensity, and severity of the 2023–2024 influenza season are uncertain, CDC anticipates continued high-level circulation of influenza viruses this fall and winter.

The CDC notes that:

  • Seasonal influenza activity remains low nationally but continues to slightly increase in most parts of the country.
  • Outpatient respiratory illness is below baseline nationally and in nine HHS regions. Region 4 (the Southeast of the country) is above its outpatient respiratory illness baseline.
  • The number of weekly flu hospital admissions remains low but is increasing.

“As we head toward winter, traditionally a tough time for respiratory illnesses, National Influenza Vaccination Week serves as a good reminder for everyone to protect themselves by getting vaccinated against influenza,” said Omar T. Atiq, M.D., MACP, President, ACP. “It’s also a good opportunity to get the updated COVID-19 vaccine which is safe and effective. People at high risk of flu-related complications including all adults over 65, adults with chronic conditions, and women who are pregnant, should not hesitate and get vaccinated now.”

All adults should get their CDC recommended immunizations, including the influenza vaccine, which help prevent illness, missed time from work, disability, and hospitalizations. ACP encourages patients to visit their physician’s office or visit community-based vaccine providers (e.g., pharmacies) for influenza vaccination and other necessary vaccines.

The latest adult immunization schedule and recommendations approved by the ACIP are available in Annals of Internal Medicine. ACP and other professional organizations reviewed and supported the schedule.

ACP’s I Raise the Rates Adult Immunization Resource Hub has links to useful resources and important information to help physicians increase adult immunization rates in their practice, including the High Value Immunization Referral Toolkit. Developed as part of ACP’s I Raise the Rates initiative, this toolkit provides resources to facilitate more effective and collaborative immunization referrals among those in your patient’s immunization neighborhood. ACP also has a series of quick vaccination tips to help you stay up to date on the latest influenza and pneumococcal vaccine recommendations.


About the American College of Physicians

The American College of Physicians is the largest medical specialty organization in the United States with members in more than 145 countries worldwide. ACP membership includes 161,000 internal medicine physicians, related subspecialists, and medical students. Internal medicine physicians are specialists who apply scientific knowledge and clinical expertise to the diagnosis, treatment, and compassionate care of adults across the spectrum from health to complex illness. Follow ACP on X, Facebook and Instagram.

Contact: Andrew Hachadorian, (215) 351-2514, ahachadorian@acponline.org