It’s not too late for the flu vaccine

B y Jaime Thomas

As the height of winter approaches so does the height of flu season.

Though officials say the current number of cases is normal for this time of year, it is still pervasive.

“Right now it’s considered widespread throughout the state,” said Patty Hunt, director of public health and patient services for Washington County.

She said New York state has seen an increase in patients with the flu during the last few weeks and blames this on people being too busy for vaccinations or visiting doctors during the holidays.

“We monitor,” Hunt said. “We get reports of the flu, so we know what’s going on in communities.”

She said one of the main problems with the illness is that people don’t always immediately realize they are sick.

“The difficult thing with the flu is people can be contagious up to a day before they show symptoms,” she said. Because of that, she recommends a number of preventative measures to stop the sickness before it spreads.

“The number one thing they can do is get the flu vaccine; that is best,” Hunt said. Though in other years there have been shortages of the vaccination, Hunt said there seems to be a good supply at this point. She said the H1N1 virus is again in circulation, so the vaccine targets that. The flu vaccine can be administered at most doctor’s offices and some local pharmacies can give the flu shot without the need to even schedule an appointment.

And nationwide, she said trends show younger people are getting hit the hardest this season, so she especially promotes the flu vaccination for those in contact with youth.

“It’s the best way to protect children under six months. Having people around them protected is the best way to protect the very young,” she said.

Anyone who is currently not sick can get a vaccination, which takes two weeks to become completely effective.

“It’s not too late at all. Any protection is better than no protection,” Hunt said. She had recommendations for those who don’t get the vaccine as well to protect against the flu.

“In lieu of that they can do frequent hand washing, cover coughs with an elbow. If they’re sick they shouldn’t be going to work or school,” she said.

Hunt said most people get vaccinated at their local pharmacies or doctors, but those who have no alternative are welcome to visit Washington County Public Health or call the office at 746-2400 or 800-624-4221.

Comments

comments

Read more in this week's Sentinel in newsstands now or click here to read right now with our e-edition.

Read more in this week's Times in newsstands now or click here to read right now with our e-edition.

Tags: , ,

Classifieds 09/02/15

Charges linger for 10 months, Man in limbo after arresting cop quits

Morrill resignation

By Christina Scanlon When former Granville Police Officer Marc D. Morrill resigned abruptly in April, several cases were still to […]

Trump, Cruz, Carson, Sanders top Washington County straw poll

Straw Poll

By Dan King The Washington County Fair met politics last week, as 737 people came out to vote in a […]

Naval Militia volunteers receive award

Naval Militia

By Dan King A group of seven area maritime veterans, including two from Whitehall and one from Granville, will be […]

First Friday this Friday

This month’s First Friday event, hosted by The Slate Valley Museum and Pember Museum and Library will features an unveiling […]

Teens’ summer jobs pay off

By Christina Scanlon As the summer of 2015 winds down and local youth prepare to head back to school, 50 […]

Hampton primary could decide election

By Christina Scanlon November’s election could be decided next week in Hampton, depending how the votes play out at the […]

Back to school in Hartford

By Christina Scanlon Teachers in the Hartford are headed back to school this week, while students across the district will […]

Backpack program, We Care Project join forces

By Dan King Last November the inaugural Mom Prom raised thousands of dollars for the We Care Project, which is […]

Changes everywhere as school begins today

By Dan King As students arrive at Whitehall Central School today, there will be abundant changes around them. Whether at […]

Bus routes honed as school looms

By Christina Scanlon The floors are gleaming with new wax, while outside the leaves are beginning to turn colors and […]

Earth science a challenge

By Christina Scanlon It takes a 65 on the Regents Exam to pass Earth Science, a course mandatory to get […]