Take anti-flu precautions

The flu has turned deadly in San Benito County.

Two San Benito County residents have died due from an influenza virus, health officials reported this week.

Many are suffering flu symptoms, and some of these infections are one of the influenza viruses. Feel like you’ve been “hit by a truck?” Then health experts say it’s probably influenza.

Flu activity reaches its highest levels between December and February, they say, and can continue through May. However, flu activity has not yet peaked in the United States.

Public health officials in the southern hemisphere have warned that this year’s flu season could be particularly severe. Flu activity south of the equator offers a good indication of coming flu activity in the northern hemisphere.

Getting the flu shot is still the best way to protect oneself against the different flu strains that circulate in the community.

San Benito County Public Health Services provides free flu shots.

You can get the vaccine locally at:

  • Your healthcare provider (covered by insurance without deductible or copay)
  • Any pharmacy (covered by insurance without deductible or copay)
  • Public Health Services office at 439 Fourth St. in Hollister on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 8:30am to 4pm. No appointments are necessary.

Public health officials also advise the following steps to protect from the flu, as well as from other respiratory illnesses:

  • Cover your cough and sneezes with a tissue
  • If you do not have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your elbow
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Stay home from work or school when you or family members are sick. Stay home until you have been symptom-free for at least 24 hours.

For more information, please call San Benito public health services at (831) 637-5367, go to the website at https://hhsa.cosb.us/publichealth/ or visit https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/Immunization/Influenza.aspx.

 

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