LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — With the flu season looming, a medical expert says babies as young as 6 months should get vaccinated.

Dr. Victor Waters, the chief medical officer for Dignity Health – St. Bernardine Medical Center, appeared on KCAL9 News on Sunday morning with tips.

The doctor said babies, especially those 6 months and older with asthma, should get the vaccine.

“The age is now as young as 6 months old,” the doctor said, cautioning that babies under 6 months should not receive the vaccine.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says last year’s flu season marked the worst in over three decades.

The department said 80,000 people died in 2017-2018 from complications resulting from the flu. Of those, 180 were children.

The CDC says the flu vaccine was about 40 percent effective.

“We hope [the flu vaccine] will be more effective this year,” said Waters. “We can only predict that it is going to be at least 50 percent effective, at least.”

For those who are already sick but haven’t had the vaccine yet, Waters says the flu shot is not off-limits as long as you don’t have a particularly high fever.

“The vaccine can improve the symptoms sooner so you might get a shorter course just from getting the vaccine so there are benefits from it all the way around,” he said.

During flu season, Waters recommended getting adequate rest and washing your hands regularly.

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