BREVARD DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH: Flu Activity On the Rise On the Space Coast

By  //  January 18, 2018

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Flu viruses are constantly changing

“You need to get a flu shot every year,” said Maria Stahl, DOH-Brevard Administrator. “Flu viruses are constantly changing and flu vaccines may be updated from one season to another. Plus, your body’s level of immunity from a previous flu vaccine is expected to have declined.”

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA — In Florida and throughout the U.S., flu activity is on the rise. In Brevard, we are currently seeing mild influenza activity that is increasing.

“You need to get a flu shot every year,” said Maria Stahl, DOH-Brevard Administrator.

“Flu viruses are constantly changing and flu vaccines may be updated from one season to another. Plus, your body’s level of immunity from a previous flu vaccine is expected to have declined.”

DOH-Brevard is urging residents to get your flu vaccine now if you have not already. There are still weeks of flu activity to come. It is not too late to get your flu vaccine. The flu vaccine is safe, and recommended for everyone six months and older, including pregnant women.

Flu vaccines can vary in effectiveness from season to season, but they continue to be the best way to prevent influenza infection and serious influenza complications. To locate a flu shot near you, contact your health care provider or use DOH’s flu shot locator: www.flhealth.gov/findaflushot

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Adults may obtain flu vaccines from their medical doctor, area pharmacies, or the county health department. Children may receive the flu vaccines from their pediatrician or at county health department clinics. DOH-Brevard offers influenza vaccines on a walk-in basis, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. at one of three DOH-Brevard clinics located in Titusville, Viera or Melbourne.

If you become ill with flu-like symptoms, contact your health care provider as soon as possible. Your health care provider can prescribe antiviral treatment if appropriate.

Treatment is most effective when started within 48 hours, so calling as soon as you become ill is important, especially if you or your loved one is at a higher risk for complications: children younger than 5, adults over the age of 65, pregnant women, and those with underlying medical conditions.

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Stay home from work and keep children home from school or daycare when sick to help prevent spreading the flu to others. It is also essential to practice good hygiene by properly and frequently washing your hands.

Make it a habit to clean and disinfect commonly used surfaces in your home, school or office. You can take additional steps to ward off the flu by coughing or sneezing into a tissue or your elbow and avoiding touching your face.

Visit FluFreeFlorida.com for more information on how you can be a part of #FluFreeFlorida. Visit www.floridahealth.gov/floridaflu for more information on influenza and influenza-like illness in Florida.

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