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Flu Vaccination - Women
Flu Vaccination - Women in United States
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United States Value:


Percentage of women ages 18-44 who reported receiving a seasonal flu vaccine in the past 12 months

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Flu Vaccination - Women by State

Percentage of women ages 18-44 who reported receiving a seasonal flu vaccine in the past 12 months

Flu Vaccination - Women Trends

Percentage of women ages 18-44 who reported receiving a seasonal flu vaccine in the past 12 months

Trend: Flu Vaccination - Women in United States, 2023 Health Of Women And Children Report

Percentage of women ages 18-44 who reported receiving a seasonal flu vaccine in the past 12 months

United States

 CDC, Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System

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About Flu Vaccination - Women

US Value: 38.9%

Top State(s): South Dakota: 54.7%

Bottom State(s): Nevada: 28.1%

Definition: Percentage of women ages 18-44 who reported receiving a seasonal flu vaccine in the past 12 months

Data Source and Years: CDC, Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 2020-2021

Suggested Citation: America's Health Rankings analysis of CDC, Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, United Health Foundation,, accessed 2023.

The flu vaccine helps protect people against seasonal influenza (flu) viruses that may lead to severe complications. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that during the 2021-2022 flu season, vaccines prevented 1.8 million illnesses and 22,000 hospitalizations associated with influenza. 

While all women are at risk of complications from influenza (including pneumonia and sinus and ear infections), pregnant women are at greater risk of severe illness and hospitalization from the flu. Influenza-related complications among pregnant women can lead to an increased risk of preterm delivery, low birth weight infants and other complications. Among pregnant women, the flu shot reduced the risk of being hospitalized with the flu by an average of 40% during 2010-2016. Getting the flu vaccine while pregnant also helps protect babies from flu illness in the first several months after their birth, when they are too young to get vaccinated. 

The annual economic impact of influenza on the United States in 2015 was approximately $11.2 billion. A 2019 study found that among adults ages 18-64, flu vaccinations saved between $8,000 and $39,000 per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY). The same study found that vaccinating pregnant women saved between $85,000 and $260,000 per QALY, depending on the severity of the flu season. Flu vaccination is highly cost-effective among pregnant women.

According to America’s Health Rankings data, flu vaccine coverage is higher among:

  • Women ages 35-44 compared with women ages 18-34. 
  • Non-Hispanic Asian women compared with non-Hispanic Black women. 
  • College graduates compared with women who have less than a high school education. 
  • Women with an annual household income of $75,000 or more compared with those with an income less than $25,000. 
  • Women living in metropolitan areas compared with those in non-metropolitan areas.

Strategies to increase flu vaccination among women include:

  • Encouraging health care providers to discuss flu vaccination with patients. Negative views of the flu vaccine are a major reason for not getting vaccinated, particularly among pregnant women. Patients are more likely to get vaccinated when providers recommend, offer and discuss flu vaccination with them. 
  • Providing client reminders for patients who have previously received vaccinations. 
  • Providing free or reduced-cost vaccinations. Most insurance plans cover the flu vaccine. However, removing cost as a barrier for those without health insurance can increase vaccination rates.
  • Increasing awareness through campaigns. The CDC provides seasonal flu vaccination campaign materials to assist partners in communicating the importance of vaccination. 

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists strongly recommends that pregnant women, or those expecting to be pregnant during flu season, get vaccinated to protect their own and their child's health. Use the CDC’s Flu Vaccine Finder tool to find a flu clinic near you. For more resources and information on the flu and flu prevention strategies, visit

Healthy People 2030 has a goal to increase the proportion of people who get the annual flu vaccine.

ACOG Immunization, Infectious Disease, and Public Health Preparedness Expert Work Group, Kevin A. Ault, and Laura E. Riley. 2018. “ACOG Committee Opinion No. 741: Maternal Immunization.” Obstetrics & Gynecology 131 (6): e214–17.

Chaiken, Sarina R., Alyssa R. Hersh, Marguerite S. Zimmermann, Britta M. Ameel, Vanessa R. Layoun, and Aaron B. Caughey. 2021. “Cost-Effectiveness of Influenza Vaccination during Pregnancy.” The Journal of Maternal-Fetal & Neonatal Medicine, January.

Dabestani, Nazila M., Andrew J. Leidner, Eric E. Seiber, Hyoshin Kim, Samuel B. Graitcer, Ivo M. Foppa, and Carolyn B. Bridges. 2019. “A Review of the Cost-Effectiveness of Adult Influenza Vaccination and Other Preventive Services.” Preventive Medicine 126 (September): 105734.

Henninger, Michelle L., Stephanie A. Irving, Mark Thompson, Lyndsay Ammon Avalos, Sarah W. Ball, Pat Shifflett, Allison L. Naleway, and on behalf of the Pregnancy and Influenza Project (PIP) Working Group. 2015. “Factors Associated with Seasonal Influenza Vaccination in Pregnant Women.” Journal of Women’s Health 24 (5): 394–402.

Putri, Wayan C. W. S., David J. Muscatello, Melissa S. Stockwell, and Anthony T. Newall. 2018. “Economic Burden of Seasonal Influenza in the United States.” Vaccine 36 (27): 3960–66.

Rasmussen, Sonja A., Denise J. Jamieson, and Timothy M. Uyeki. 2012. “Effects of Influenza on Pregnant Women and Infants.” American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 207 (3): S3–8.

Thompson, Mark G., Jeffrey C. Kwong, Annette K. Regan, Mark A. Katz, Steven J. Drews, Eduardo Azziz-Baumgartner, Nicola P. Klein, et al. 2019. “Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness in Preventing Influenza-Associated Hospitalizations During Pregnancy: A Multi-Country Retrospective Test Negative Design Study, 2010–2016.” Clinical Infectious Diseases 68 (9): 1444–53.

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