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Influenza is a contagious respiratory disease that can be prevented by immunization. It is not the same as the "stomach flu." Influenza (the flu) is caused by a virus that attacks the nose, throat, and lungs. It can cause mild to severe illness and at times can lead to death.
Each year, circulating strains around the world change just enough that influenza vaccine needs to change. So, it is important to be vaccinated each and every year.
Everyone older than 6 months of age should get vaccinated for flu this year. For more information visit the Minnesota Department of Health website.
Influenza is a serious and unpredictable disease! You may be able to infect others beginning one day before symptoms develop and up to 5-7 days after becoming sick. Influenza symptoms come on quickly in the form of fever, dry cough, sore throat, headache, extreme tiredness, stuffed-up nose, and body aches. These symptoms can be severe and put you in bed for several days. People who become severely ill with influenza-like symptoms should see a physician.
Everyone can do his/her part to avoid spreading influenza. While vaccination is the best way to protect yourself and others, here are other things you can do to protect yourself and others from influenza.
Infection prevention and control is required to prevent the transmission of communicable diseases in all health care settings. Infection prevention and control demands a basic understanding of the epidemiology of diseases; risk factors that increase patient susceptibility to infection; and the practices, procedures and treatments that may result in infections.
The risk of acquiring a healthcare-associated infection is related to the mode of transmission of the infectious agent, the type of patient-care activity or procedure being performed and the underlying patientâ€™s host defenses. Healthcare workers should be vaccinated against preventable diseases such as hepatitis B. Personnel at risk for exposure to tuberculosis should be screened per recommendations.
Stop the spread of germs that make you and others sick: Cover Your Cough! Download a free poster for your home or business.
Wash Your Hands!
Hand hygiene is a term used to cover both hand washing using soap and water, and cleaning hands with waterless or alcohol-based hand sanitizers.
Washing your hands is the best way to stop germs from spreading. Learn more about why you should wash your hands, diseases you don't want, antibiotic resistance, how germs are spread, where germs hide, and when to wash your hands.