Increase in influenza- like illness

(Commonwealth Healthcare Corp.) — CHCC would like to advise the general public and medical providers in the community of a sharp increase in influenza-like-illnesses  occurring in the community compared to previous weeks.

Surveillance data shows an increased number of flu cases in Dec. 2018. Flu activity is widespread in most of the islands around this time of the year, and more pronounced after Super Typhoon Yutu. High levels of flu activity are likely to continue for several more weeks. Influenza or the flu is a highly contagious viral disease. It is primarily spread by person to person contact via coughing or sneezing. Symptoms include cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, fever, chills, and body aches.

Preventing flu

Get vaccinated

  • • A yearly flu shot is recommended for everyone 6 months and older. It is not too late to get a flu shot for yourself and for your loved ones.
  • • Vaccination is especially important for protecting those at high risk for serious flu complications, including: young children, pregnant women, adults 65 years and older, and anyone with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes, and heart disease.

Stop the spread:  W.A.T.C.H. IT

  • • Wash your hands
  • • Avoid sick people and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • • Teach others how to prevent the flu
  • • Cover your cough or sneeze
  • • Have an emergency plan ready in case you get sick

Contact your healthcare provider

  • • People who are at high risk of developing serious flu complications when they get the flu: the very young, the very old, pregnant women, and those with underlying illnesses like heart conditions and respiratory lung problems.
  • • People who are very sick with flu symptoms like shortness of breath and difficulty breathing, chest pain, very high and persistent fevers, and ear ache. These are signs that should lead parents or the individuals to go see their doctor. The doctor may then prescribe medications to treat the flu.
  • • Take medication(s) as recommended by your doctor to treat the flu.
  • • If you are already sick with the flu, please contact your doctor for advice before visiting the clinic — this is to prevent and avoid exposure and spread of the disease. By doing this, you will help avoid exposing other people at the clinics.

For more information, please contact CHCC-Division of Public Health Services, Immunization Program at  236-8745.

Source: Marianas Variety :

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