Protect Yourself and Prevent the Spread of Flu
Florence, Ky. – Flu activity is already widespread in Northern Kentucky; earlier than what we’ve experienced in previous years. Data for this week indicate 243 flu cases have been reported across Boone, Kenton, Campbell and Grant counties this week, compared to only 5 this same time last year. In order to protect yourself and your loved ones during this flu season, especially during the holidays, now is the time to get your flu shot.
“Everyone six months of age and older should get a flu vaccine,” stated Jennifer L. Mooney, PhD, MS, NKY Health’s District Director of Health. “It is the best way to reduce the risk of serious complications from flu.” Studies show the flu vaccine reduces the risk of illness by between 40 and 60 percent, and provides protection not only to the vaccinated individual, but also to those around them who may be at higher risk for serious illness. Studies also show that it is safe to get a COVID-19 vaccine at the same time as a flu shot, including the new CDC recommended Bivalent COVID-19 booster. For many people, the flu can make them feel miserable, with symptoms lasting 5-7 days. For some groups, including very young children, pregnant women, people ages 65 and older, and people with certain health conditions, the flu can cause very serious illness and can even be life-threatening.
Flu shots are widely available in our region. You can visit your healthcare provider or one of the many pharmacies and clinics in Northern Kentucky offering the flu shot. The Health Department also offers flu vaccines by appointment at its four county health centers. For contact information, go to https://nkyhealth.org/county-health-centers/.
In addition to getting vaccinated, these everyday preventive actions can stop the spread of germs that can cause respiratory illness like the flu:
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. After using a tissue, throw it in the trash and wash your hands.
- Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
- Stay home from work, school and errands when you or a family member is sick with flu. Keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth because germs spread this way.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
The Northern Kentucky Health Department provides high-quality public health services to more than 420,000 residents of Boone, Campbell, Grant and Kenton Counties, with a goal of preventing disease, promoting wellness and protecting against health threats. The Health Department seeks to be a nationwide leader in public health, and was one of the first in the country to earn national public health accreditation. For more information, visit www.nkyhealth.org.