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.


 
 

 
IronMan_pict

Special Operations develops ‘Iron Man’ Suit

MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – Tony Stark’s Iron Man suit is cool. But it’s not real. The Tactical Assault Light Operators Suit is cool, too. But it is real and may soon be protecting America’s special operations forces...
 
 

Financial responsibility — vital to readiness

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — In the “Band of Brothers” miniseries, there is a line in the movie where the soldiers are told to make sure they sign up for life insurance to ensure their next-of-kin gets $10,000 upon the soldier’s death. While none of us are about to make a combat jump in 1944 to...
 
 

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...
 

 

Adapt, overcome, succeed

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — Change is inevitable, especially in today’s Air Force. If you’ve been serving for more than a few years, it’s likely you’ve experienced everything from new physical fitness requirements to the implementation of force management programs. Enlisted performance reports and feedback forms have been altered and changes to the promotion system are...
 
 

Living in the New Normal

The Military Child Education Coalition, or MCEC, will be hosting Living in the New Normal Institute, Feb. 4-5. LINN-I is a free two-day institute outlining specific community resources, deployment information and practical strategies for encouraging resilience in all children. Some learning outcomes to expect from the training are differentiating affective aspects of children dealing with...
 
 
Training_pict4

Air Force, Army conduct joint service training

U.S. Air Force and Arizona Army National Guard units conducted joint training at a southern Arizona military training range Jan. 20. A-10C Thunderbolt IIs from the 354th Fighter Squadron, based out of D-M, and a UH-60A Black Ha...
 




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