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Infection Control & Patient Safety

It's National Influenza Vaccination Week - Now's the Time!

Published December 6, 2012 6:02 PM by Barbara Smith
It may feel like a mild flu season so far, but several states - Alabama, Mississippi, Texas, Tennessee and Louisiana - are already reporting high flu activity. You can check weekly at the CDC's FLUVIEW page that shows the level of flu cases for each State.

While many healthcare facilities, clinics, pharmacies and doctors start their flu vaccine campaigns in September, national influenza vaccination week is actually this week Dec. 2-8.  There's clearly time to get your flu shot. It takes a few weeks for you to develop protection so the sooner you get it the better.

I often hear staff say they never get the flu so they don't need the vaccine. Well, that doesn't mean they are innately and permanently immune to this very common viral disease.  This just might be the unfortunate year they DO get the illness.

Thank you to the many nurses who have taken the flu shot. Others may want to check Families Fighting Flu, a volunteer organization created to honor children who suffered major medical complications or death from the flu.  There are moving stories about how flu impacted their lives.

posted by Barbara Smith


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Gelfia Gelfia, NIzcnDhDsifSY - RitLcngeyTG, ksFpSgrcVbWRSmtrKU April 16, 2013 6:21 AM

Stepheneye    good to hear you persevere. I know how challenging it can be.   The one factor that' s proven to influence  patients to take the shot is when their health care provider recommends it.  So keep it up


Barbara Smith December 11, 2012 8:23 PM

Most patients that I encounter refuse the flu shot because they believe they get the flu from the shot.  

Every patient who refuses states the one and only time they got the flu shot in the past, they've gotten the flu.  

How do you belay that belief?  I still take the time to educate them about the properties of the vaccine and the unliklihood of the vaccine causing the flu, but they will not hear it.

I do my patients the courtesy of getting the vaccine every year not just because I wish to protect them, but so I don't get the flu myself.  So, double benefit.

I find it frustrating, especially with the elderly population, who seem the be the biggest complainers about this so-called phenomenon, and parents of very young children seem more willing to put their health or their children's health at risk rather than take measures the prevent the flu to begin with.  Especially since these are the highest at-risk populations.  

Stephenye, Family Practice - NP, Locums December 11, 2012 12:35 AM
Sacramento CA

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About this Blog

    Occupation: Infection Control Professionals
    Setting: Welch Allyn; St. Luke’s Hospital (Smith)
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