While almost everyone can benefit from getting an annual influenza vaccination, adults 50 years or older are at a higher risk of developing complications from the influenza virus. Influenza, also known as the “flu,” is a severe and sometimes life-threatening disease. Influenza and its related complications cause an average of over 200,000 hospitalizations. And, over 30,000 deaths occur in the US each year. You can avoid getting influenza by getting vaccinated each year.