It’s Flu Season; Get Your Vaccination

Larry Warren, president and CEO of Howard University Hospital, kicks off the hospital’s annual flu vaccination campaign, reminding employees, volunteers and the public the importance of prevention against a potentially deadly disease.

WASHINGTON -- Every year, 5 percent to 20 percent of the population gets the flu, more than 30,000 people die from the flu and 200,000 are hospitalized, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Those statistics point up the importance of getting vaccinated against the potentially deadly disease.

Where to Get a Flu Shot

  • Your personal physician
  • Employer flu shot clinics
  • Pharmacies, such as CVS, Walgreens, Safeway, Giant, CVS, Rite Aid, Shoppers, Food Lion and Walmart
  • County or city health departments
  • Medical clinics or local hospitals.

The cost of a flu shot ranges from $12 to $25, depending on where you get it. Medicare, Medicaid and most insurance companies cover the cost of flu shots for the elderly and other high-risk groups. To find a flu shot near you, visit http://www.flu.gov/individualfamily/vaccination/locator.html.

The best thing to do is avoid getting the flu.

To prevent getting the flu, take these everyday preventive actions to stop the spread of germs.

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • If you are sick with flu–like illness, CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. Your fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.
  • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.

For more information on how to prevent the flu and what to do if you get it, visit the Centers for Disease Control website at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/

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