Pandemic Flu

Flu Season Precautions: Keeping Yourself & Your Family Healthy
At the onset of the annual flu season, citizens are encouraged to take some simple precautions to protect themselves, their families and the general public from becoming ill. Receiving the appropriate vaccinations, being aware of flu symptoms and applying basic hygiene principles can assist in minimizing the spread of influenza, not only in the workplace, but likewise in the community.
7 Ways to Stay Healthy
  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle through rest, diet, exercise and relaxation.
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand cleaner (at least 60%) if soap and water are not available. Instant hand sanitizers should be used as an important supplement to washing hands, but not as a replacement.
  • Avoid touching the nose, mouth and eyes as germs spread this way.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, or cough and sneeze into your elbow. Dispose of tissues in no-touch trash receptacles.
Handwashing Composite
  • Keep frequently touched items disinfected (such as telephones, computer keyboards, doorknobs, drawer handles, etc.). If you need to use a co-worker’s phone, desk or other equipment, clean it first.
  • Stay home or leave work immediately if experiencing flu-like symptoms, including fever (100 degrees Fahrenheit/ 38 degrees Celsius or over) or chills and cough or sore throat. Additionally, symptoms of flu can include runny nose, body aches, headache, tiredness, diarrhea, or vomiting). The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that individuals stay home if they are symptomatic with flu-like illness until at least 24 hours after they are free of fever, without the use of fever-reducing medicines.
  • Get vaccinated for seasonal flu, when vaccine is available in your area.
Caring for Yourself & Your Family
People with seasonal flu symptoms, who are caring for themselves or others at home should:
    Child sneezing with the flu
    • Keep away from others as much as possible; do not attend work, church or school if ill.
    • Ensure plenty of rest and drink clear fluids (such as water, broth, sports drinks and electrolyte beverages for infants) to keep from being dehydrated. Keep these fluids and other medical supplies on-hand (disinfectant, tissues, clear beverages, etc.) to avoid the need of traveling to public areas.
    • Insist all family members cover coughs and sneezes; disinfect exposed surfaces to minimize the spread of the virus. Clean hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand especially after touching potentially exposed items/surfaces.
    • Check with a health care provider regarding any special care needed if pregnant or if diagnosed with another health condition, such as diabetes, heart disease, asthma or emphysema. Use antiviral medications if your doctor recommends them; seek medical attention promptly if symptoms worsen
    Nasal Mist or Injection - Forms of Vaccines Available
    Influenza vaccine can be administered in either of two forms; a nasal mist or an injection.
    Injections: These are usually administered via needle in the upper arm and are commonly available at your health care provider’s office, local health departments, pharmacies, and other approved distribution sites.
    Flu shot
    Nasal Mist: For those who do not wish to receive an injection, an influenza mist can be painlessly administered via the nose. This form is recommended for healthy individuals aged five to 50; this form is just as effective as the injected vaccine and as widely available.

    NOTE: Prior to receiving a flu vaccination/mist, those with life-threatening allergies should inform health care providers regarding their specific conditions; this includes severe allergies to eggs or if ever having Guillain-Barre’ syndrome.

    Other Flu Vaccination Facts
    • Citizens are reminded that you cannot get influenza from receiving a vaccine.
    • It takes approximately two weeks after vaccination for your body to develop an immune response, so early autumn immunizations are recommended.