Wauseon, OH: It is recommended that everyone 6 months of age and older receive a yearly influenza vaccine to protect them from seasonal influenza viruses. In Ohio, flu season typically begins in October and runs through the spring. So far this season, flu activity in Ohio has been minimal, but we do not know when that will change. During the 2015-2016 influenza season, 20 residents of Fulton County were hospitalized with influenza, with the majority of those hospitalizations occurring in March.
It takes about two weeks for the flu vaccination to take full effect, so it is important to get the flu vaccine as soon as you can, but it is not too late. Flu vaccination is available at most healthcare providers’ offices, local health departments and retail pharmacies. Your Fulton County Health Department still has an ample supply of the vaccine. Please call the health department at 419-337-0915 to find out when you can receive your flu vaccine.
For the 2015-2016 influenza season, CDC estimates that influenza vaccination prevented approximately 5.1 million influenza illnesses, 2.5 million influenza-associated medical visits, and 71,000 influenza-associated hospitalizations. “Influenza vaccination is the safest and most effective way to fight the flu,” said ODH Medical Director Dr. Mary DiOrio. “Flu vaccination is especially important for older people, young children, pregnant women and people with certain health conditions who are more vulnerable to serious flu complications.”
In addition to vaccination, ways to avoid getting or spreading the flu include washing hands frequently; covering your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing; avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth; and staying home when you are sick.
Symptoms of seasonal flu include fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. If you do get sick with the flu, stay home, drink plenty of fluids and get plenty of rest. If symptoms become severe, you are pregnant or you have an underlying chronic medical condition, seek medical attention immediately.
For more information please visit us at www.fultoncountyhealthdept.com or call 419-337-0915 to make an appointment for your flu vaccine.