You don’t want flu and COVID — shots recommended by BGSU chief health officer

Bowling Green State University’s chief health officer is recommending getting two vaccination shots together this fall.

Ben Batey, who is the former county health commissioner, spoke at Wednesday’s Wood County Committee on Aging board meeting.

Flu shots and COVID boosters should be on the to-do list this fall, he said.

“This is probably the year to do both,” said Batey, who is a member of the committee on aging board.

“What I’m telling people is, while we’re in an entirely different position when it comes to COVID, as to being able to protect ourselves, you probably don’t want the flu and COVID at the same time.”

Take action before the weather turns and more people are gathering indoors, Batey said.

It would also be a good idea to have the shots before the holidays, he said. They take two weeks to a month to become effective, Batey said.

“We’ve probably all had family members or an experience where someone tested positive two days before a vacation or a holiday or wedding or some event that they want to attend, that got derailed,” he said.

Batey said if you’ve recently had COVID, wait three months to get a booster. Eligible persons should also be two months out from their last booster, Batey said.

Some board members spoke about difficulty registering online for boosters, or not being able to find it.

“They should be widely available now,” Batey said.

He suggested looking at the Wood County Health Department website, under the COVID tab.

The health department, 1840 E. Gypsy Lane Road, is holding booster vaccination clinics on Mondays from 3-6 p.m. and Wednesdays from 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

Wood County Hospital also has clinics on Fridays in September from 9 a.m.-6 p.m.

Batey was also asked if the Pfizer and Moderna shots can be mixed.

He said it does not matter which vaccine is taken.

The only difference is Pfizer boosters are available for ages 12 and older, he said. Moderna is for ages 18 and older.

Board member Tom Milbrodt, who is a member of the county health board and a doctor, said that there have been a lot of COVID cases in people who are fully vaccinated and double boosted — including him.

“And omicron can punch right through it,” said Milbrodt, who added that he wasn’t very ill.

“Immunity wears off with this virus a lot. It’s very likely to be an annual thing,” he said.

Also at the meeting, the board:

• Heard seniors can pay for programs with a credit card. There is a 3.5% service fee to use it. Meals cannot be paid with the credit card.

• Heard Markeita Phillips has been hired as the Northeast site manager. She has been a route driver since 2003.