“Why must I go and get a (flu) shot?” asks first-grader Amanda in the new storybook “Our Best Shot.”
It’s a question many parents have faced and one that Dr. Alexandria Yarborough, a pharmacist, hopes to answer with the children’s book she wrote in collaboration with Families Fighting Flu (FFF). The nonprofit organization educates the public that influenza can be a serious illness, with life-threatening complications, and encourages annual vaccinations.
Yarborough, a pharmacy manager in Columbia, South Carolina, said she wrote the book to help parents and kids better understand the risks of flu and to relieve fears about getting a flu shot. It comes as flu and other respiratory infections are surging in the United States.
“It just breaks my heart when I try to remind people to get their flu shot and it's not something they're interested in,” she told Pharmacy Times. Most people can get a flu shot and it’s recommended for those older than 6 months of age, she said.
In the book, children learn alongside Amanda as she discovers what a vaccine is, learns who gets flu shots and why, and also gets support for overcoming the fear of needles, also known as trypanophobia.
Read or watch more of the interview on the Pharmacy Times website.