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DHH: Louisiana’s Seasonal Flu Activity Continues to Increase - Residents Urged to Get the Flu Vaccination

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  • DHH: Louisiana’s Seasonal Flu Activity Continues to Increase - Residents Urged to Get the Flu Vaccination

    Louisiana’s Seasonal Flu Activity Continues to Increase

    Residents Urged to Get the Flu Vaccination

    Friday, February 11, 2011 | Contact: Bureau of Media & Communications (225) 342-7913 or (225) 252-3579 (cell)

    BATON ROUGE -Louisiana's flu activity has spiked in recent weeks and continues to be widespread. According to the state's most recent influenza surveillance data, flu symptoms accounted for more than 20 percent of the state's doctor visits last week, up from 12 percent the previous week. The state's seasonal flu activity is most prevalent in North and Central Louisiana and in the Baton Rouge Metropolitan area. Click here to view the 2011 influenza surveillance reports.

    Because of the increases, the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals is strongly encouraging all residents who haven't already done so to protect themselves and their families by getting a seasonal flu vaccination. Each year, the flu kills more than 36,000 Americans.

    "It's not too late to vaccinate," said Dr. Frank Welch, director of the state's immunization program. "The flu shot only takes a few days to be effective, and people are usually protected completely within 7-to-10 days of getting the flu vaccine. Vaccines are the best preventive measure we have to help fight the spread of this illness, and we encourage everyone to get their seasonal flu shot to help protect not only themselves, but their families and friends as well."

    This year, the CDC recommends everyone older than 6 months get the flu vaccine. This year's flu vaccine will protect against both the seasonal flu and the H1N1 virus. Medical studies show getting the flu vaccine has proven to be very safe and effective in preventing people from catching the flu.


    While everyone should get a flu vaccine, vaccination is especially critical for certain groups of people who are at a higher risk of developing flu-related complications. Those groups include:
    • Children younger than 5, especially children younger than 2 years old
    • Adults 65 and older
    • Pregnant women
    • American Indians and Alaskan Natives, who appeared to be at higher risk of flu complications last flu season
    • People who have a weakened immune system or chronic medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease
    "Vaccination is also important for health care workers, and other people who live with or care for high-risk individuals to keep from spreading flu to people who may be especially susceptible to the virus' effects. This includes anyone who works with babies younger than 6 months of age, who are not eligible for the vaccine themselves," said Dr. Welch. "This year's vaccine is plentiful and available at many places, including health care providers, pharmacies, some employers and Louisiana's parish health units."


    In addition to getting the vaccine, DHH encourages the public to take other preventive actions to stop the spread of the flu:
    • 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 sanitizer.
    • 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 your contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.
    For more information on flu activity by region in Louisiana and to find out how you can avoid being ill, visit www.fighttheflula.com.

    The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals strives to protect and promote health statewide and to ensure access to medical, preventive and rehabilitative services for all state citizens. To learn more about DHH, visit http://www.dhh.louisiana.gov. For up-to-date health information, news and emergency updates, follow DHH's blog at www.myhealthla.org, Twitter at http://twitter.com/La_Health_Dept and search for the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals on Facebook.

    http://new.dhh.louisiana.gov/index.c...om/detail/1514
    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
    -Nelson Mandela

  • #2
    Re: DHH: Louisiana’s Seasonal Flu Activity Continues to Increase - Residents Urged to Get the Flu Vaccination

    Department News
    Public Health | Flu

    Baton Rouge Area Parish Health Units Hold Flu Vaccination Clinics

    It’s Not Too Late to Vaccinate

    Friday, February 25, 2011 | Contact: Bureau of Media & Communications (225) 342-7913 or (225) 252-3579 (cell)

    BATON ROUGE- If you haven't gotten your flu shot, it's not too late. Louisiana's flu activity remains widespread and very high. Flu symptoms accounted for 15 percent of the state's doctor visits last week. The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals wants to help protect you and your family from the flu. Next week DHH is offering flu vaccinations to everyone at Greater Baton Rouge area parish health units. No appointments are necessary.

    <TABLE style="TEXT-ALIGN: center" border=0 cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0><TBODY><TR><TD style="WIDTH: 355px" vAlign=top>Ascension Parish Health Unit

    Tuesday, March 1, 2011
    1:00 - 3:00 PM
    901 Catalpa St.
    Donaldsonville, LA 70346
    225-474-2004
    </TD><TD style="WIDTH: 355px" vAlign=top align=middle>Iberville Parish Health Unit
    Friday, March 4, 2011
    8:00 AM - 11:00 AM
    24705 Plaza Drive
    Plaquemine, LA 70764
    225-687-9021
    </TD></TR><TR><TD style="WIDTH: 355px" vAlign=top>East Baton Rouge Parish Health Unit
    Monday, February 28, 2011
    12:00 - 4:00 PM
    Wednesday, March 2, 2011
    8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
    Baton Rouge, LA 70808
    353 N. 12<SUP>th</SUP> St.
    225-242-4862
    </TD><TD style="WIDTH: 355px" vAlign=top>Pointe Coupee Parish Health Unit
    Friday, March 4, 2011
    8:00 AM - 11:00 AM
    282 B Hospital Road
    1:00 PM - 3:30 PM
    New Roads, LA 70760
    225-638-7320
    </TD></TR><TR><TD style="WIDTH: 355px" vAlign=top>East Feliciana Parish Health Unit
    Friday, March 4, 2011
    9:00 AM - 11:00 AM
    12080 Marston St.
    Clinton, LA 70722
    225-683-8551
    </TD><TD style="WIDTH: 355px" vAlign=top>West Baton Rouge Parish Health Unit
    Friday, March 4, 2011
    8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
    685 Louisiana Road
    Port Allen, LA 70767
    225-342-7525

    </TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>


    A flat fee of $10 will be charged for patients who fall into a fee-paying category, but services will not be denied due to inability to pay. Medicaid or Medicare participants must bring their insurance card to cover the cost. Parents are also asked to bring their child's vaccination records.

    This year, the CDC recommends everyone older than 6 months get the flu vaccine. This year's flu vaccine will protect against both the seasonal flu and the H1N1 virus. Medical studies show getting the flu vaccine has proven to be very safe and effective in preventing people from catching the flu.


    While everyone should get a flu vaccine, vaccination is especially critical for certain groups of people who are at a higher risk of developing flu-related complications. Those groups include:
    • Children younger than 5, especially children younger than 2 years old
    • Adults 65 and older
    • Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding
    • American Indians and Alaskan Natives, who appeared to be at higher risk of flu complications last flu season
    • People who have a weakened immune system or chronic medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease
    "Vaccination is also important for health care workers and other people who live with or care for high-risk individuals to keep from spreading flu to people who may be especially susceptible to the virus' effects. This includes anyone who works with babies younger than 6 months of age, who are not eligible for the vaccine themselves," said Dr. Frank Welch, DHH Immunization Medical Director. "This year's vaccine is plentiful and available at many places, including health care providers, pharmacies, some employers and Louisiana's parish health units."

    In addition to getting the vaccine, DHH encourages the public to take other preventive actions to stop the spread of the flu:
    • 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 sanitizer.
    • 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 your contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.
    • Follow public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds and other measures to keep our distance from each other to lessen the spread of flu.
    For more information on flu activity by region in Louisiana and to find out how you can avoid being ill, visit http://www.fighttheflula.com/.

    The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals strives to protect and promote health statewide and to ensure access to medical, preventive and rehabilitative services for all state citizens. To learn more about DHH, visit http://www.dhh.louisiana.gov/. For up-to-date health information, news and emergency updates, follow DHH's blog at http://www.myhealthla.org/, Twitter at http://twitter.com/La_Health_Dept and Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/LaHealthDept.

    http://new.dhh.louisiana.gov/index.c...om/detail/1539
    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
    -Nelson Mandela

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