TDH Urges Everyone to Get a Flu Vaccine Now
NASHVILLE- With flu season almost here, the Tennessee Department of Health reminds everyone to get a flu vaccine now to help keep themselves and their loved ones healthy.
''Getting your flu vaccination is really about protecting other people, not just ourselves" said TDH Commissioner John Dreyzehner, MD, MPH. ‘’ Even those who think 'I have never been sick from the flu' have probably passed it to another person at some point. It is easier than ever to do the right thing and get vaccinated."
Flu vaccines are widely available across Tennessee from a number of sources and take only a few minutes to receive. Contact your health care provider about flu vaccine locations near you, or visit the Vaccine Finder available at http://flushot.healthmap.org/.
‘’Influenza related deaths are tragic and impact families across Tennessee every year,’’ said Tennessee Immunization Program Director Kelly Moore, MD, MPH. It’s important these families know there are things they can do to keep their loved ones healthy during the flu season, especially getting a flu vaccine.’’
While everyone over six months of age is encouraged to get a flu vaccine, it’s especially important for young children, the elderly and pregnant women to be vaccinated. Nine children in Tennessee died from complications relating to influenza during the 2014-2015 flu season.
‘’You can’t predict who is going to get the flu; it could be you this year,’’ said Moore. ‘’But getting a flu vaccine is the best tool we have to help protect against the influenza virus. This season’s flu shot and nasal spray vaccines have been updated from last season to better protect against the most common strains of flu causing illness today.’’
After your flu vaccination, it’s still important to practice good health habits to protect yourself from the flu and other winter viruses, and to prevent spreading them to others if you do get sick. Good health habits include frequent hand washing with soapy water or use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers, and covering coughs and sneezes with a sleeve or tissue. People who are sick should stay home to recover and to prevent spreading illness to co-workers, friends and others.
Learn more about the benefits of getting a flu vaccine this year at: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/flu/default.htm
The mission of the Tennessee Department of Health is to protect, promote and improve the health and prosperity of people in Tennessee. TDH has facilities in all 95 counties and provides direct services for more than one in five Tennesseans annually as well as indirect services for everyone in the state, including emergency response to health threats, licensure of health professionals, regulation of health care facilities and inspection of food service establishments. Learn more about TDH services and programs at www.tn.gov/health.