Health & Safety

September 15, 2013

Health care professionals recommend flu shots

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas — Autumn is just a few weeks away, the time of year when oppressive summer heat gives way to cooler weather.

It’s also the time of year when flu activity begins, reaching its peak in January or February, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

However, people need not suffer any of the symptoms associated with the flu, including fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose and muscle aches; the flu vaccine offers the best protection against the illness, 359th Medical Group health care professionals said.

“A yearly flu vaccine for everyone 6 months of age and older helps protect against influenza,” Lt. Col. (Dr.) Yi Yang, 359th Medical Operations Squadron director of immunizations, said. “It is designed to protect against the three main flu strains that are expected to cause the most illness during the flu season.”

The three main strains are H3N2, influenza B and H1N1.

The safety of the flu vaccine – which is available in injectable and nasal-spray forms – is closely monitored by the CDC and the Food and Drug Administration, but there may be minor side effects associated with the vaccine such as pain at the injection site, fever, sore throat and a runny nose, Yang said.

The CDC describes the flu as a “contagious disease caused by the influenza virus that can be spread by coughing, sneezing or nasal secretions.” The flu, which affects 5 to 20 percent of the U.S. population, can cause severe illness and life-threatening complications in many people.

Populations at higher risk for flu-related complications include pregnant women, young children, people 50 years of age and older, people with chronic medical problems and health care workers.

Yang said it’s important to receive the flu vaccine as early as possible – when the vaccines are available – because the influenza season can begin as early as September. He also said the severity of the flu season cannot be predicted; it varies from year to year.

Department of Defense policy requires immunization of all active-duty and Air Reserve Component members against influenza; if these members are located on an installation with a medical treatment facility, they must receive their vaccine through the local MTF.

In addition, TRICARE Prime’s reimbursement program entitles Air Force beneficiaries to receive influenza and pneumococcal vaccines at TRICARE retail network pharmacies at no additional cost.

JBSA-Randolph health care professionals said it’s important that beneficiaries who receive these vaccines provide the MTF with documentation of the vaccines to ensure accurate records; they should hand-carry, scan and email, or fax their immunization record to the clinic.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Lessons learned in protecting social media accounts

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — On a Saturday afternoon in late November, I was informed about a political remark that appeared on my Director of Public Affairs Twitter feed. A staff member called to ask if I was aware of the re-tweet. At the time, I was on leave, out of the state, tending to my daughter...
 
 

Some temp, seasonal, interim workers eligible for health benefits

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) — Some temporary, seasonal and intermittent employees are now eligible for coverage under the Federal Employees Health Benefits program (FEHB), said Office of Personnel Management officials. Temporary, seasonal or intermittent employees who anticipate working 130 or more hours per month for 90 consecutive days are now eligible to receive the...
 
 

MLK Commemoration Tribute

(U.S. Air Force Photo by Airman 1st Class Chris Massey) David Bellamy, 355th Operations Support Squadron chief of plans, exercises and readiness, serves as guest speaker during the Martin Luther King Commemoration Tribute at Davis-Monthan, Jan. 22. After Bellamy’s speech, attendees watched a documentary based on the remembrance of the life and death of Dr....
 

 

Legislation changes UCMJ for victims of sexual assault

WASHINGTON — The fiscal year 2015 National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, signed into law last month, significantly changes the Uniform Code of Military Justice, known as UCMJ, in cases pertaining to rape and sexual assault. All of the UCMJ amendments contained in the NDAA pertain to investigating and prosecuting sexual assault crimes and victim...
 
 

Airmen get a refresher on water survival training

Airmen backstroke as a unit during a water survival training refresher course. The group activity focused on getting aircrew members accustomed to working together while in water so they are able to preserve energy in the event of a ditched aircraft. Staff Sgt. Whitni Levering, 42nd Electronic Combat Squadron airborne linguist, is dragged through the...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jamal D. Sutter)

Want to quit smoking? Here’s how

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. — By using the Federal Employees Health Benefits program, all federal employees and retirees – as well as their spouses and dependents – have full access to evidence-based tobacco c...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin