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When Is Flu Season In Georgia

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Michigans Flu Season Turns Deadly Early With Some Clinics Short On Vaccine

Flu season far from over in Georgia

A 69-year-old Oakland County man has died from the flu becoming an early and apparently first death of the Michigan flu season, even as overall flu cases remain sporadic.

The death, announced Thursday by the Oakland County Health Division, comes as health officials campaign for more residents to get vaccines, and as pockets of Michigan struggle to get enough shots to meet demand.

The shortage has forced some county departments, including Oakland Countys, to postpone or cancel clinics, while other providers say they have plenty in stock even as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended that consumers were vaccinated by Oct. 31.

In some cases, retailers may have one kind of vaccine, but theyre struggling to build stock in another.

It seems to be a lag behind where we usually are. pushed back shipping dates, so thats pushed back our ability to have them on hand for consumers, said Ruth Manier, director of community health services at Dickinson-Iron District Health Department in Michigans Upper Peninsula.

Her department has already cancelled six clinics and postponed several others, she said.

The Western Upper Peninsula Health Department also has struggled to get enough doses of vaccines that protect the general public and a high-dose version for seniors, said Cari DiGiorgio, the departments public health director.

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The Flu Shot Is Safe Easy To Get And Free

Where can you get the flu shot?

If youre not sure where to go to, use our Locate a Pharmacy search tool to find a pharmacy near you. The sooner you get your flu shot, the sooner you start protecting yourself and others! Need a doctor? We can help with that too! Just use our Find a Doctor tool.

When is the flu season?

Flu season can start as early as September and can go through May. You should try to get your flu shot before the flu starts spreading in your community. The earlier you get your flu shot, the better. Always plan to get your flu shot as soon as it becomes available in the fall. If thats not possible, at least plan to get it before the end of October.

Note: The COVID-19 vaccine does not protect you from the flu. Its vital to get the flu shot even if youve had the COVID-19 vaccine.

Who should get the flu shot?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , most people six months of age or older should get the flu shot every year. The flu shot is most vital for those who have a higher risk of health-related issues, should they get the flu. These people are called high-risk. The CDC classifies high risk to be:

  • People 65 years of age or older
  • Women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant
  • People who live in a nursing home or other long-term care facilities
  • People of any age with certain chronic conditions
  • People who live with or care for those at high risk for health-related issues.

Is the flu shot safe?

Why is the flu shot important?

Preventing A Child From Getting The Flu

The most effective way to prevent a child from getting the flu is by administering a flu vaccination.

  • These vaccinations cause antibodies to develop within the patients body, protecting the individual against the influenza virus.
  • While seasonal flu vaccination is not a 100 percent certain way to eliminate the flu, it has been shown to significantly improve the odds of a person avoiding a flu infection.
  • But a flu vaccination is not the only option parents have to fight the flu.

Parents can also incorporate better eating habits and hygiene into their childrens routines to help them persevere through the flu season.

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Regular Flu Season Looms As Wildcard As Georgia Hospitals Strain To Treat Covid Patients

By: Ross Williams– September 20, 2021 1:00 am

Signs outside a CVS Pharmacy in Cherokee County advertise free flu and COVID-19 vaccines. Health care experts hope flu shots along with masks and social distancing will help keep the coming flu season mild. Ross Williams/Georgia Recorder

It wont be long before autumn comes to Georgia, but the changing season could bring more than just cooler temperatures and beautiful foliage.

For pharmacists, cold weather means more people coming through their doors looking for relief from stuffy noses and sore throats or to ward off infection with a flu vaccine. October marks the start of the annual flu season, which typically worsens as the mercury drops before ending around May. And with Georgia hospitals still packed with COVID-19 patients, a bad flu season could mean even more strain on already stressed health workers.

Typically during flu season, our hospitals are much busier from an inpatient standpoint, said Anna Adams, senior vice president of external affairs for the Georgia Hospital Association. When we have this number of COVID inpatients on top of our regular patient population, the beds and the staff are just not there, so were already running into issues where people are experiencing extremely long wait times, ambulances are having to wait a long time to get patients into the hospital because we just dont have the space and staff. When you add a flu surge to that, it pushes our inpatient numbers way beyond capacity.

Who Can Get The Flu

Flu Season Hits Georgia

Anyone can become infected with the influenza virus. During an average flu season, 10 to 20% of people are infected. Influenza spreads easily from person to person when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The influenza virus can also survive on surfaces outside the human body for hours. People can become infected by getting the virus on their hands, then rubbing their eyes or nose. Healthy adults can spread the virus from one day before they have symptoms until five days after their beginning of symptoms. They can pass influenza virus to others even before they feel ill. Children may shed the virus for a longer period of time than adults. Flu viruses change every year, so immunity is not long-term.

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Who Should Get A Flu Vaccine

The flu shot is approved for people age 6 months and older, including healthy people and people with chronic health conditions. The nasal-spray vaccine is approved for healthy people 2 to 49 years of age who are not pregnant.

Anyone wanting to protect themselves against flu should consider getting vaccinated. Vaccination is recommended for most people, especially those most likely to experience complications of the flu and people who live with or care for people at highest risk.

Those at highest risk include:

  • people 50 years and older
  • people who live in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities that house those with long-term illnesses
  • people with chronic health conditions
  • women who will be pregnant during the influenza season
  • children 6 months of age to 18 years of age.

People who live with or care for those at high risk for complications from influenza, including:

  • household contacts of persons at high risk for complications from the flu
  • household contacts and out of home caregivers of children less than 6 months of age
  • healthcare providers.

Are Flu Vaccines Safe

Yes. Flu vaccines have been used for over 50 years and have been safely given to hundreds of millions of people, including pregnant people. Flu vaccines, like all vaccines used in the U.S., are carefully monitored for safety through the U.S. vaccine monitoring systems .

Find answers to more questions about vaccine safety.

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Find Out What’s Happening In Atlantawith Free Real

Health care officials have also become aware of outbreaks at colleges and universities in several states. While Georgias Department of Public Health has reported no influenza outbreaks in the last seven weeks, the age group with the largest growth of flu cases over that time period is the 5-24 group, which includes young adults, according to the Influenza-Like Illness Net Visits by Age Group of the Weekly Flu Report compiled by DPH and the CDC.

Weekly Us Map: Influenza Summary Update

AJC IN Context: COVID-19 and The Flu in Georgia

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Early And Unusual Start To Flu Season Across Us And Florida

MIAMI Flu season is now underway for most of the United States including Florida. Its the earliest start in more than 15 years. Federal health officials have released their first case estimates.

The southern states are the hardest hit right now and flu B viruses are dominating.

Dr. William Schaffner from Vanderbilt University Medical Center says, Thats a bit odd because the influenza Bs are usually more active at the end of the season. Here we are at the beginning. We dont know why that is, but its noteworthy because influenza Bs like to affect children.

The CDC estimates, so far this season, there have been as many as 2.5 million flu illnesses, 29,000 hospitalizations, and 2,400 deaths nationwide. Five of those deaths were children, according to the CDC.

Twelve states and Puerto Rico are now experiencing high influenza-like illness.

The states are: Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington.

In Florida, flu activity is increasing and remained above levels observed at this time in previous seasons, according to the Florida Department of Health. Flu activity is also particularly elevated in children for this time in the season.

Doctors say now is the time to get your flu shot if you havent been vaccinated.

It was bad, but not as bad as the one before it, when flu caused an estimated 61,000 deaths and 810,000 hospitalizations.

How To Get A Flu Shot

As an Emory University employee, you have several options for getting a flu shot:

OPTION 1 : The best way to get a flu shot is through your local pharmacy. If you are on an Aetna Plan, visit any in-network retail pharmacy such as CVS, Walgreens, Target, Publix, or Kroger. You will need to present your Emory CVS/Caremark prescription drug card to get a free flu shot. If you are on the Kaiser Plan, attend one of the Kaiser Walk-In Flu Clinics offered at their facilities .

OPTION 2: Get a flu shot as part of your preventive exam at your doctor’s office. Flu shots are free of charge for Aetna or Kaiser Plans, but for the Aetna Plans, you must use Tier 1 and Tier 2 doctors only. Note: if you’ve already had your annual preventive exam and make an appointment for a flu shot, you may be charged for the visit.

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Completing The Attestation Form

Once you have gotten your flu shot, you will need to complete Emorys Flu Attestation Form. You will not need to upload documentation about your flu shot, but you will need to provide the date you received it. Individuals who need a medical, religious or other exemption from the flu shot requirement can select this option on the form.

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The flu may seem like a minor illness, and for many otherwise healthy adults it is. But certain groups of people have a higher risk for developing severe complications due to the flu. That includes people with some underlying health conditions as well as those over the age of 65, pregnant people and kids under the age of 2, the CDC said.

As with COVID-19, the best way to protect yourself and those around you from the flu is with vaccination. And the CDC recently announced that most people can safely get both a COVID-19 vaccine and flu vaccine at the same appointment.

Ideally, we should all be following CDC recommendations and common-sense health practices, Javaid explained. Of course, that means getting vaccinated. But it also means staying home when youâre feeling sick, continuing to wear masks in high-risk environments, washing your hands frequently and getting tested potentially for both flu and COVID-19 if you start to feel symptoms.

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Is ‘flurona’ More Dangerous Than Having Just One Of Them Alone

There hasn’t necessarily been a lot clear research on it, but obviously it stands to reason that not having COVID or the flu at any given time is preferable to having it, so certainly you’d rather not have both.

One University of Wisconsin analysis of studies conducted from 2019-21 looking at co-infections found that at any given time, nearly 1/5th of COVID patients may have a co-infection of some sort, and that it was associated with “poor outcomes, including increased mortality.”

The good news is is that vaccinations are available for protection of the worst effects of both.

Georgia DPH advises:

The best protection against COVID-19 and influenza is vaccination both COVID-19 and influenza vaccinations can prevent serious illness, hospitalizations and death from infections. The two vaccines can be administered at the same time.

Staying home when you are sick is critically important to prevent co-infections with COVID, influenza or any infectious disease.

Treatment And Postexposure Chemoprophylaxis In Pregnant Women

Pregnant women are at high risk of serious complications of influenza infection such as intensive care unit admission, preterm delivery, and maternal death. Patients with flu-like illness should be treated with antiviral medications presumptively regardless of vaccination status. Treatment with oseltamivir is preferred however, if oseltamivir is unavailable, zanamivir may be substituted. Health care providers should not rely on test results to initiate treatment and should treat patients presumptively based on clinical evaluation 38.

Because of the high potential for morbidity, the CDC and ACOG recommend that postexposure antiviral chemoprophylaxis be considered for pregnant women and women who are up to 2 weeks postpartum who have had close contact with someone likely to have been infected with influenza. If oseltamivir is unavailable, zanamivir can be substituted, two inhalations once daily for 10 days. All women who are pregnant or are in the first 2 weeks postpartum should be counseled to call for evaluation immediately if the early signs and symptoms of influenza infection develop 38. For more information about treatment and dosage see ACOG and the Society for MaternalFetal Medicines Seasonal Influenza Assessment and Treatment of Pregnant Women with Influenza-like Illness algorithm at

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What Are The Vaccine Side Effects

The flu shot contains only killed viruses and cannot give you the flu. The vaccine boosts the immune response against influenza. Some minor side effects that could occur are soreness, redness, or swelling where the shot is given, low grade fever or aches that last 1-2 days. The nasal-spray vaccine contains weakened viruses and does not cause the severe symptoms of an influenza illness. Side effects could include runny nose, headache, vomiting, aches, fever, sore throat or cough. Serious side effects are very uncommon with either vaccine and the risks associated with the disease are much greater than the risks associated with vaccination.

Why Do Some People Not Feel Well Or Feel Like They Have Flu Symptoms After Getting A Flu Vaccine

Health officials say this is ‘critical year’ for people to get flu shot

While a flu vaccine cannot give you the flu, there may be times when you dont feel well after getting your flu vaccine. Heres why:

  • You may get some mild and temporary side effects after your flu vaccine, such as soreness or redness where you got your shot, muscle aches, headache or a low fever. These common side effects usually begin soon after you get the vaccine and last 1-2 days. These reactions are a sign that your immune system is working and that your body is building protection against flu.
  • You could become sick from other respiratory viruses that are spreading during flu season. A flu vaccine only protects you from the flu, not other illnesses like COVID-19 or the common cold.
  • You could encounter flu viruses, which cause the flu, shortly before getting your flu vaccine or during the 2 weeks after getting the vaccine when your body is still building immunity. As a result, you could get the flu before the vaccine has the chance to protect you.
  • You could experience flu-like symptoms, even after getting vaccinated, because you were exposed to a flu virus that is very different from the viruses that the vaccine is designed to protect against. There are many different flu viruses that spread and cause illness among people. However, even when the circulating flu viruses are not a perfect match to the strains in the flu vaccine, getting a flu vaccine should still help protect you against serious flu illness and its complications.

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When Should I Get A Flu Shot In 2021

Public health officials are reminding everyone that getting a flu shot or influenza vaccination this season is imperative to protect yourself from getting the flu and prevent overwhelming the hospital during the COVID-19 pandemic.

It is recommended that everyone 6 months or older get a flu vaccineFlu shots are typically effective for about 6 months, so getting the shot by the end of October is the best option to increase the chance of protection during the entirety of the season.

Research supports that the flu shot is safe for pregnant women and important to avoid health problems during pregnancy.

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