As a patient’s first point of contact and medical adviser, healthcare workers play a crucial part in the fight against influenza. As a matter of fact, when asked why they take the annual influenza vaccine, a majority (over 60%) of high-risk patients answers: ‘Because my doctor or nurse recommends it’. Indeed, family doctors are in a unique position to inform their patients about the benefits and effectiveness of seasonal influenza vaccination and the risks of not receiving a flu shot. However, even a clear understanding of the risk of influenza may not always lead to vaccination of the patient. The possible costs associated with immunization, the fear of needles, supposed side effects and a whole series of misconceptions are also major reasons for not seeking vaccination. In those cases, it is a family doctor’s duty to offer the appropriate advice. General practitioners and other primary healthcare workers also contribute to the fight against influenza by setting a good example. They should take the flu shot themselves not only for their own protection, but also to prevent transmission of influenza to their patients.