General Flu information


  
  
What is Influenza (flu)?

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Influenza, also known as the "flu", is a contagious disease that is caused by the  influenza virus.  It attacks the respiratory tract in humans (nose, throat, and lungs). The flu is different from a cold.  Influenza usually comes on suddenly and may include these symptoms: 
  
  • Fever
  • Headache  
  • Tiredness (can be extreme)  
  • Dry cough (may last 2 or more weeks)  
  • Sore throat
  • Nasal congestion
  • Body aches (may last 3-5 days).  
  
These symptoms are usually referred to as "flu-like symptoms".

  

Flu vaccine info.

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Because the flu shot is made from inactivated viruses (the viruses are killed), the vaccine will  not give you flu because it is a killed virus. As with any vaccine, the flu shot may not protect you 100% of all  susceptible individuals.
  
Risks and side effects of influenza.

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Fever, malaise, myalgia, and other systemic symptoms can occur after vaccination.  The reactions to the vaccine may be a sore or tender arm at the injection site. These reactions begin 6-12  hours after vaccination and can persist for 1-2 days.

  

  

Why you should have the flu shot? 

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The top three reasons to get the flu vaccine are:
  
  • Prevents influenza-related death.
Each year over 36,000 people in the U.S. die because of the flu-most are 65 or older. More people die from the flu than from any other vaccine-preventable diseases.
  • Prevents sever illness.
Influenza puts about 114,000 people in the hospital each year in the U.S. Children younger than 2 years old are as likely to be hospitalized as adults over 65.
  • Protects other people.
You should get vaccinated if you live with or care for others who are at high risk of complications from the flu. Getting a flu vaccination yourself can help protect your family members, including seniors and young children.
  
The flu season.

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While the best time to get a flu shot is October or November, a flu shot in December or later will still protect you and your loves ones against the flu

  
The flu is far more dangerous than a bad cold.

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It is a disease of the lungs, and it can lead to pneumonia, hospitalization and even death. More people die from complications of the flu than any other vaccine-preventable disease. The number of flu-related deaths in the United States has risen dramatically since the 1970s.
  
Peak months for flu activity

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During the past 19 flu seasons, months with the heaviest flu activity (peak months) occurred in December in 4 years, January in 5 years, February in 7 years, and March in 3 years.
  

  
Cold vs. flu symptoms.  

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Most people do not distinguish between the cold symptoms and the flu’s.  The following chart should help you understand the differences.  Remember, a flu shot is your best protection against the flu.
  

Symptoms

Cold

Flu

Fever

Rare in adults and older children, but can be as high 102oF in infants and small children.

Usually 102oF, but can go up to 104oF and usually last 3 to 4 days.

               

Headache

Rare

Sudden onset and can be sever

Muscle aches

Mild

Usual, and often sever

Tiredness and weakness

Mild

Can last 2 or more weeks

Extreme exhaustion

Never

Sudden onset and can be severe

Runny nose

Often

Sometimes

Sneezing

Often

Sometimes

Sore throat

Often

Sometimes

Cough

Mild hacking cough

Usual, and can become severe.

 

  
   
Facts or myths about flu shot

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FALSE

“The shot can give you the flu”  
Flu vaccines are made from killed influenza viruses. These cannot give you the flu.

MAYBE

“Even if I get a flu shot, I can still get the flu.”  
This can happen, but the flu shot usually protects most people from the flu.

FALSE

“The vaccine isn’t 100% effective, so I’m better off getting the flu.”  
No vaccine is 100% effective. However, if you get a flu shot but still the flu, you are likely to be far less sick than you would have been without the protection.

FALSE

“The side effects are worse than the flu.”  
The worst side effect you’re likely to get is a sore arm. The risk of a rare allergic reaction is far less than the risk of severe complications from influenza.  

TRUE

“Not everyone can take a flu shot.”  
If you are allergic to eggs (used in making the vaccine); are very ill with a high fever; or have had a severe reaction to the flu vaccine in the past, you might not be able to get this protection.  
  
  
Remember, even people in good health still need a flu shot. Even if you are not at high risk of complications, you should get a flu shot to protect yourself and everyone you live with and contact.

  

What Pleasant Health Services can do for you?

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Pleasant Health Services provides everything you need to make your flu clinic program successful:
  • Educate your staff and communicate with them before, during and after your on-site clinic.
  • Provide licensed and experienced local healthcare professionals.
  • Provide on-site clinic coordination, set-up and administration.
  • Take care of paperwork including consents, record keeping and disposal of medical waste.
  
A flu immunization program can increase company productivity, reduce absenteeism and medical costs and show employees that the company cares about their health.  
  
Employers have little more to do than provide a room. Our office staff will fax all documents well in advance of your scheduled on site clinic. Our nurses are specially trained in immunizations so the clinic goes very smoothly, and we can vaccinate between 45-60 or more employees in an hour. Thus time lost from work is minimal.
  
 
  

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