Flu cases decreasing in DouglasBy Trisha Maldonado
Flu cases in Cochise County are slowly decreasing, but officials are still asking the public to get their flu shot.
“Be sure to take common sense prevention steps such as hand washing frequently, staying home when you’re sick, and coughing into a sleeve or tissue to prevent the spread of germs,” said Dr. Cara Christ, Chief Medical Director for Health Services. “And get your flu shot they’re available almost everywhere these days. The flu shot won’t protect you if you are already sick or from other illness. ”
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, a flu shot cannot cause flu illness.
The viruses contained in flu shots are inactivated (killed), which means they cannot cause infection.
Flu vaccine manufacturers kill the viruses used in the flu shot during the process of making vaccine, and batches of flu vaccine are tested to make sure they are safe.
Douglas Family Health located on 1101 N San Antonio is still giving flu shots free of charge from 8-11 a.m. and 1-4 p.m.
Chiricahua Community Health Center will also continue to offer flu shots. CCHI patients may walk in those who are not must make an appointment. CCHI can be reached at (520) 364-3285.
According to the Arizona Department Health Services and CDC the single best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu vaccination. ADHS and CDC recommend a yearly flu vaccine as the first and most important step in protecting against flu viruses.
Other ways to protect yourself are:
· 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.
· 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.
· Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like the flu.
· Wipe down grocery carts at stores before using them.