Health & Safety

September 21, 2012

Get vaccinated!

by 452d Aerospace Medicine Squadron

Influenza is a serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes death. Every flu season is different and the influenza infection can affect people differently. Even healthy people can get very sick from the flu and spread it to others.

Over a period of 31 seasons, between 1976 and 2007, the Centers for Disease Control estimate flu-associated deaths in the United States range from 3,000 to 49,000 people. During a regular flu season, about 90 percent of deaths occur in people 65 years and older.

The ‘seasonal flu season’ in the United States can begin as early as October and as late as May. During that time, flu viruses are circulating throughout the population. An annual seasonal flu vaccine, either the flu shot or the nasal-spray flu vaccine, is the best way to reduce the chances of getting the seasonal flu. As more people receive vaccinations against the flu, the ability of the virus to spread throughout a community is greatly reduced.

Flu vaccines cause antibodies to develop in the body about two weeks after vaccination. These antibodies provide protection against infection with the viruses that are in the vaccine.

The seasonal flu vaccine protects against the three main influenza viruses that research indicates will most likely be prevalent during the upcoming season. Three kinds of influenza viruses commonly circulate among people today: influenza B viruses, influenza A (H1N1) viruses and influenza A (H3N2) viruses. Each year, one flu virus of each kind is used to produce seasonal influenza vaccine.

There are two types of vaccines:

  • The ‘flu shot’ — an inactivated vaccine containing the dead virus is given with a needle, usually in the arm. The flu shot is safe for use in people older than six months, including healthy people and people with chronic medical conditions.
  • The nasal-spray flu vaccine — a vaccine made with live, weakened flu viruses that is given as a nasal spray (sometimes called LAIV for “Live Attenuated Influenza Vaccine”). The viruses in the nasal spray vaccine do not cause the flu. This vaccine is approved for use in healthy people, ages two through 49, who are not pregnant.

About two weeks after vaccination, antibodies that provide protection against the influenza viruses in the vaccine develop in the body.

The CDC recommends that people get vaccinated against influenza as soon as flu season vaccine becomes available in their community. Influenza seasons are unpredictable and can begin in early fall or winter.

Flu vaccines are produced by private manufacturers. They usually begin processing shipments in August and continue throughout September and October until all vaccines are distributed.

Doctors and nurses are encouraged to begin vaccinating their patients as soon as the vaccine is available in their areas.
A new flu vaccine is needed every year because flu viruses are constantly changing.

It is a requirement for all Air Force members to get vaccinated.

For more information, or to schedule a flu team visit for your unit, contact Maj. Lorraine Assumma or Maj. Marcos Sandovalgarcia at 951-655-6261. To view more information about influenza, visit the CDC website at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/season/flu-season-2012-2013.htm




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


 
 

 
DoD
Untitled-1

DoD highlights warrior, family care during Warrior Care Month 2014

The Defense Department recently hosted a rehabilitation expo as part of Warrior Care Month as it continues its commitment to supporting wounded, ill and injured troops, their families and caregivers. James Rodriguez, deputy ass...
 
 

Virtual Hope Box mobile app grows in popularity

A free smartphone app that helps people in crisis remember good things in their lives has been downloaded 13,000 times in the past six months, according to data from app stores. That’s good news for experts at the National Center for Telehealth & Technology (T2), which developed the Virtual Hope Box app to help users...
 
 
Courtesy Photo

Tinker epitomized Native American strength, leadership

Courtesy Photo Maj. Gen. Clarence L. Tinker was a natural leader who personally led his Airmen into combat missions during the early days of World War II. He perished, along with his crew, during the battle of Midway. The natio...
 

 
(U.S. Air Force photo/Sarah Corrice)

AF tests first all-electric vehicle fleet in California

(U.S. Air Force photo/Sarah Corrice) Airmen from Los Angeles Air Force Base learn how to use charging equipment for the base’s new electric vehicle fleet during a training demo Oct. 31, 2014, in El Segundo, Calif. When not in...
 
 

AF expands digital library content for Airmen

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) — Airmen at 19 Air Force installations around the world will soon have access to a new 200-title audiobook and eBook digital library, Air Force officials said. The 19 participating installations will help test digital content distribution using the new Air Force eReader AERO; a single portable device developed...
 
 

Air Force officials update AF Instruction 1-1

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Air Force officials approved Air Force Instruction 1-1, Air Force Standards, Nov. 7, to clarify guidance on Airmen’s religious rights and commanders’ authority and responsibility to protect those rights. The changes come as a result of a Religious Freedom “Focus Day” earlier this year when leaders in the Air Force’s chaplain corps...
 




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