Another School Year… Another Flu Season

Dr. Ram, Meriter Middleton

Dr. Ram, Meriter Pediatrics

It’s hard to believe it’s already that time of year again. Here’s what’s new for flu season 2010-2011:

This years’ flu shot contains the H1N1 (“swine flu”) strain and 2 other strains of flu virus most likely to cause seasonal flu this year. Regardless of whether you received seasonal flu vaccine, H1N1 vaccine, or both vaccines in 2009, vaccination with a 2010-11 seasonal influenza vaccine is necessary. Although the World Health Organization announced the end of the H1N1 pandemic this month, the virus does continue to circulate. The CDC recommends that all people age 6 months and older receive the flu shot — not just people in high risk categories.

Each year, it is estimated that there are 200,00 people hospitalized due to influenza and there are 36,000 deaths related to complications of influenza.

According the Flu Resource Center here is a list of some of the top places cold and flu germs hide:
1. Handshakes, sneezes, kisses
2. Kitchen sink sponges and dishcloths
3. Restrooms and toilet seats
4. Doorknobs
5. Drinking fountains
6. Shopping carts

The best protection against the flu are to WASH YOUR HANDS FREQUENTLY and GET VACCINATED.
Meriter clinics are anticipating having flu vaccine available early September, so remember to check our Web site or to call your primary care physician’s office for availability.

Sumita Ram, M.D.
Meriter Middleton Pediatrics

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