OCCHD recommends flu vaccinations and effective hand hygiene to avoid the ravages of flu this season. This comes after our first flu-related death of the season and number of flu hospitalizations increasing by 42 in Oklahoma County totalling 136 people – a significant jump compared to last year. In March 2016, Oklahoma County health professionals recorded 36 flu-related hospitalizations and zero deaths.
Vaccination is important for those at high risk from flu complications including people 65 years of age and older, young children, pregnant women, persons with chronic lung disease, diabetes, heart disease, neurologic conditions and other long-term health conditions.
Flu symptoms include:
Fever more than 100.4° F (38 C)
Aching muscles, especially in your back, arms and legs
Chills and sweats
Dry, persistent cough
Fatigue and weakness
OCCHD reminds the public to follow these prevention tips:
- Frequent hand washing using soap and warm water, or alcohol based products.
- Make “respiratory hygiene” a habit using tissues to cover coughs and sneezes.
- Stay home from work, school and other public places while feeling ill.
- If you suspect that you or your loved one has the flu, go to your physician as soon as possible. Antiviral medications are available to prevent or reduce the severity of flu and are most effective if started within 2 days of symptom onset.
OCCHD offers the flu vaccine at our three clinic locations. Learn more about our hours and locations at www.occhd.org/clinics or call 419-4261.