DUVAL COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT URGES PRECAUTIONS FOR SEASONAL FLU
Duval County Health Department (DCHD) officials urge residents and visitors to take precautions to help limit their risk of exposure to seasonal flu. The flu is an infection of the respiratory tract caused by the influenza virus. Compared with most other viral respiratory infections, such as the common cold, influenza infection often causes a more severe illness.
“The most effective precautions we can use to fight illness are getting vaccinated before flu season when the virus starts circulating, and by practicing good hygiene habits,” said DCHD Public Health Preparedness and Surveillance Epidemiologist Karen Elliott. “With the holidays approaching, and many people traveling, these simple measures may lessen your risk of exposure of the virus or transmission to others.”
Be aware of symptoms of the flu, such as headache, fever, a severe cough, runny nose or body aches. Contact your health care provider or a local hospital immediately if symptoms appear and if you have any questions about the flu.
Every year more than 23,600 Americans die from seasonal influenza, so the DCHD urges the following preventive steps for the flu:
· Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
· Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
· Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
· Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
· If you are sick with flu–like illness, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone, without the use of fever-reducing medicine, except to get medical care or for other necessities.
· Get re-vaccinated EVERY YEAR because flu viruses change each year.
To locate flu vaccine, contact your healthcare provider or visit these links: