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dr denise pate - mom - in people human interestIt’s the least wonderful time of the year: flu season.

With coughs and sniffles abound, many are eager to get the flu vaccine — while others are avoiding the shot like, well, the plague.

While the nasal flu vaccine has been largely unavailable in recent years, medical experts are urging the public to get the vaccine in shot form as the colder months set in.

The flu shot contains an inactive dose of the influenza virus, which prompts the immune system to create antibodies to fight off the potentially deadly viral infection.

However, while many are lining up to get the influenza vaccine, others remain skeptical of the shot’s effects.

Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that it is “important to convey the full burden of seasonal flu to the public.”

Myth: The Vaccine Causes the Flu

Dr. Denise Pate, Internal Medicine Doctor at Medical Offices of Manhattan, tells PEOPLE she’s encountered several patients who were wary of the shot due to long-circulated rumors that it causes illness.

“They think it’s gonna give them the flu, it’s a very common thing,” she says. “Because the virus is inactive, it absolutely cannot transmit the infection.”

To read the full People article featuring Dr. Denise Pate of Medical Offices of Manhattan click here.

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