Mon December 5, 2016
The DuPage County Health Department urges anyone who has not yet received influenza (flu) vaccine this season to get it as soon as possible. This week is Vaccinate Illinois Week, a statewide campaign which promotes and coincides with National Influenza Vaccination Week, a national observance to highlight the importance of continuing influenza vaccination through the holiday season and beyond.
Flu activity typically peaks between December and February in the United States, and the season can last as late as May. While there's still time to benefit from a flu shot, the sooner you get vaccinated, the more likely you are to be protected against the flu when activity picks up in your community.
Every season, flu causes millions of illnesses, hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations and thousands of deaths. Even healthy people can get sick from the flu. A yearly flu vaccine is recommended for everyone 6 months of age and older as the first and most important step in protecting against influenza disease. Flu shots are available at physician offices, pharmacies, and quick care clinics throughout DuPage County.
Flu vaccination can reduce flu illnesses, doctors' visits, and missed work and school due to flu, as well as prevent flu-related hospitalizations and deaths.
In addition to getting a flu shot, take everyday preventive actions to stop the spread of germs:
• Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
• Try to avoid close contact with sick people. If you are sick with flu-like illness, you should stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone (without the use of fever-reducing medicine) except to get medical care
• Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
Influenza antiviral drugs can be a second line of defense for treatment of some who get sick with flu and can lessen the duration and severity of symptoms.