The flu is a contagious respiratory illness spread mainly by droplets made when people cough, sneeze or talk. It can cause mild to severe illness, and can sometimes even lead to death. This season, the circulating flu type is more severe than in the past. The good news is that the circulating strains are well matched to the strains in the 2012-2103 flu vaccine, so if you got this year’s flu immunization you should be covered.
Take time to get vaccinated
- You are responsible for the health and well being of yourself, your family and your work place
CDC recommends a yearly seasonal flu vaccine as the first and most important step in protecting against seasonal flu. It is not too late to get vaccinated. Please contact the Health Center @ 602-495-5797 for flu vaccine availability and/or to help facilitate a location to obtain the flu vaccine. When calling, please ask to speak to a Health Center nurse.
The seasonal flu vaccine protects against the three seasonal viruses that research suggests will be most common.
Vaccination is especially important for people at high risk of serious flu complications, including young children, pregnant women, people with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease and people 65 years and older.
Seasonal flu vaccine also is important for health care workers, first responders and other people who live with or care for high risk people to prevent giving the flu to those at high risk.
People at greatest risk for flu infection include children, pregnant women, and people with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease.
Take everyday preventive actions:
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.
- Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
If you are sick with flu-like illness, CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. (Your fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.) Keep away from others as much as possible. This is to keep from making others sick. Employees who have a family member who is ill, but feel well themselves, may continue to work as usual. They should monitor their health daily and stay home if they become ill. Please check with the Health Center and/or your Health Care provider for questions regarding your health and returning to work.
While sick, limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.
Flu-like symptoms include:
- Fever (usually high)
- Extreme tiredness
- Dry cough
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Muscle aches
- Sore throat
- Sometimes diarrhea
Detailed Flu information and handouts can be found at the following web sites:
General Flu information: http://www.flu.gov/index.html
Maricopa County Flu information: http://www.maricopa.gov/Public_Health/
Arizona State Flu information: http://www.azdhs.gov
CDC Flu information: http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/
International Flu information: http://www.who.int/en/