INDIANAPOLIS — State health officials are urging Indiana residents to get their flu vaccinations to protect themselves from influenza this season.
“At best, the flu makes you miserable. At worst, it can be deadly,” said Indiana State Health Commissioner Jerome Adams, M.D., M.P.H. “The best ways to protect yourself and your family are to get vaccinated and follow good health practices.”
Influenza, or the “flu,” is a viral infection of the respiratory tract. Influenza is spread by respiratory droplets from infected people or contact with contaminated surfaces or objects. Infection can occur when influenza viruses contact the eyes, mouth or nose, and possibly through inhaling droplets from a sneeze or cough.
Flu season occurs annually, typically starting around Oct. and continuing through May. Seasonal flu viruses can vary from year to year, so it is important to get a flu vaccine every year to protect against them. The flu vaccine is the best protection against the flu and may be offered by many doctor’s offices, clinics, health departments, urgent care centers, pharmacies, college health centers and employers.
High-risk individuals include pregnant women, young children (especially those younger than 6 months who cannot be vaccinated), those with chronic illnesses and/or compromised immune systems and adults age 65 and older. Healthcare personnel are also encouraged to get a flu vaccine to protect themselves and their patients during the flu season.
To find a location that provides flu shots in your community, check with your local health department or visit the HealthMap Vaccine Finder at http://vaccine.healthmap.org/.
To learn more about the flu, visit the Indiana State Department of Health’s flu page athttp://www.in.gov/isdh/25462.htm