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Sunday December 9th 2018

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H1N1 Flu: Prevention, and Vaccine

by Kristen Godfrey and Sarah Ekerholm
The seasonal influenza vaccine is now available; if you would like to lessen your chance of getting the seasonal flu, you should get the vaccine. Getting a vaccination in the fall gives your body a chance to build up immunity and protect itself from the flu virus.

It is important to note that the seasonal flu vaccine will not protect against H1N1 influenza. There is no vaccine available yet for H1N1, but it is expected that the vaccine will be available sometime in October. If you are among the following groups, it is recommended that you receive the H1N1 vaccine when it becomes available: pregnant women, health-care and emergency services personnel, people who are 6 months through 24 years old, people who live with or care for children younger than 6 months and people age 25 through 64 who have chronic health conditions.

Currently, the H1N1 influenza symptoms have been similar to seasonal influenza and have not been severe. However, there has been an increase in people receiving medical care for influenza like illness and groups of influenza like illness taking place in schools and colleges. We all play a role in limiting the number of Minnesotans who are infected with the virus by practicing good prevention techniques. It is important to stay home when sick, wash hands often, and cough and sneeze into a tissue or arm (not hand).

To prepare yourself or your family, create a “flu kit” with the following items: tissues, alcohol based hand sanitizer, disinfectant cleaner (to clean surfaces), thermometer, fever reducing medication such as ibuprofen, bottled water and other nourishing fluids.
If you are mildly sick, stay home and treat your symptoms. If you are have a temperature of 100 °F or higher AND a cough or sore throat, or if you have another chronic illness contact your doctor for guidance.
For more information: Minnesota Department of Health: 1-877-676-5414, Centers for Disease Control: 1-800-232-4636, U.S. Government’s Web site

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2 Responses to “H1N1 Flu: Prevention, and Vaccine”

  1. anxietyboy says:

    H1N1 or Swine Flu is a bit scary but it a good thing to note that this virus is not that very deadly. .

  2. If you look at the pandemic of 1977, when H1N1 or Swine Flu re-emerged after a 20 year absence, there is no shift in age-related mortality pattern. The 1977 “pandemic” is, of course, not considered a true pandemic by experts today, for reasons that are not entierely consistent. It certainly was an antigenic shift and not an antigenic drift. As far as I have been able to follow the current events, the most significant factor seems to have been that most people, who were severely affected, were people with other medical conditions.

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