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News > Flu shots are available at clinic
Flu shots are available at clinic

Posted 9/20/2013   Updated 9/20/2013 Email story   Print story

    


by Staff Sgt. JiKasha Walker
42nd Medical Operations Squadron


9/20/2013 - MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Al  -- Cold and flu viruses are spread from person to person when respiratory droplets from a cough or sneeze of an infected person move through the air and are deposited on the mouth or nose of people nearby.

Viruses also can be spread when people touch respiratory droplets that have landed on a surface, such as a desk, and then touch their own eyes, mouth or nose before washing their hands. Some viruses can live two hours or longer on surfaces such as cafeteria tables, doorknobs and desks.

Currently, there are two versions of the flu vaccine, a nasal spray and an injectable vaccine. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, both vaccines are equally effective against influenza.

The FluMist nasal spray contains weakened live influenza viruses and can cause some mild, short-lived symptoms such as congestion and runny nose. Some health problems and age limits may prevent people from receiving the FluMist.

The injectable influenza vaccine contains inactivated (killed) viruses and can cause mild problems such as soreness, redness or swelling around the injection site. The clinic will screen patients prior to administering any vaccines to determine the appropriate vaccine.

The flu shot is now available at the 42nd Medical Group for high-risk patients meeting the following criteria:
· Children under 2;
· Pregnant women;
· Adults over 65;
· Patients with asthma;
· Patients with chronic lung, heart, kidney, liver, brain, nervous system, blood or metabolic disorders, including diabetes;
· Patients with weakened immunity due to disease or medication;
· and children on long-term aspirin therapy.

Also, the 42nd Medical Group's Immunization Clinic will begin administering flu vaccinations for the 2013-2014 flu season to active duty military members beginning today.

A flu shot line will be held for active duty members only from 7 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Thursday in the 42nd Medical Group's first floor atrium. All active duty, Guard and Reserve Air Force members are required to receive an annual flu shot.

In addition to vaccinating oneself, the following measures will decrease one's chances of becoming ill this flu season:
· Cover mouths and noses when sneezing or coughing;
· Wash hands with soap and water often;
· Avoid touching one's eyes, nose or mouth;
· Stay home when sick and check with a healthcare provider when needed;
· and practice other good health habits.

For more information, call the Immunization Clinic at 953-5731, Public Health at 953-5606 or visit http://www.cdc.gov/flu.



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