Health Officials Encourage Flu Vaccination to Prevent Illness

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[Alleghany, Ashe and Watauga Counties, NC]The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services announced the state’s first flu-related deaths of the 2017-18 season after two adults died of complications from influenza (flu) infection from mid-to-late October.

The best way to prevent the spread of flu is to get the flu vaccine. The CDC recommends yearly vaccination against the flu for everyone 6 months and older. For the second year in a row, the CDC is recommending the injectable vaccine instead of the nasal spray because of concerns about the nasal spray’s effectiveness.

AppHealthCare is offering walk-in flu vaccine clinics with extended hours for individuals to receive their flu vaccine. Each clinic’s hours will be 1:30pm to 6:00pm. The walk-in flu vaccine clinic dates and locations are:

  • Thursday, November 9th and November 16th at the Ashe Health Center, 413 McConnell Street Jefferson, NC
  • Monday, November 13th and November 20th at the Alleghany Health Center, 157 Health Services Road Sparta, NC
  • Tuesday, November 14th and November 21st at the Watauga Health Center, 126 Poplar Grove Connector Boone, NC

Flu infections are most common from late fall to early spring in North Carolina, with peak activity usually occurring in January or February. It is important to receive the flu vaccine in order to protect you during the flu season.

According to studies cited by the CDC, vaccination against the flu can:

  • Protect people who are at greater risk of becoming seriously ill from flu, like older adults, pregnant women, people with chronic health conditions (including obesity) and young children
  • Make illness milder and reduce the risk of more serious outcomes
  • Protect pregnant women and their developing babies

People should take the following precautions to protect against the spread of flu and other viruses:

  • Stay home when sick until fever-free for at least 24 hours
  • Wash hands frequently, preferably with soap and water
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue and then discard the tissue promptly

To learn more about flu, visit http://flu.nc.gov. This website will be updated weekly during flu season by the Division of Public Health with the most current flu related data.

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