Ministry Health Care says help fight the flu by receiving the annual influenza vaccine

National Influenza Vaccination Week marks the beginning of the flu season

To mark National Influenza Vaccination Week (December 2-8), Ministry Health Care is reminding the public about the importance of receiving the influenza vaccination. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone over the age of six months receives the vaccination each year.

“With the start of the flu season upon us, it is vitally important that everyone who is able to get the flu vaccine takes the time to receive it,” said Dr. Stewart Watson, president of Ministry Medical Group. “We know that the best way to stop the spread of the influenza virus is by vaccinating as many people as possible.”

Ministry Health Care puts such a high importance on vaccinations that physicians, employees and volunteers working at a Ministry facility are required to receive the influenza vaccine. Since the beginning of December, those who could not or chose not to receive the vaccine are asked to wear a mask when in contact with patients, visitors and co-workers. All employees with flu symptoms will be asked to stay home while symptoms persist.

According to the CDC, symptoms of the flu include:
o    Fever  or feeling feverish/chills
o    Cough
o    Sore throat
o    Runny or stuffy nose
o    Muscle or body aches
o    Headaches
o    Fatigue (tiredness)
o    Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.

Watson adds that it’s It's important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever. Other complications of the flu include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration, and can cause chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma or diabetes to get worse. If you have questions about the influenza vaccine, please contact your health care providers.

Influenza Vaccinations are available at Ministry Medical Group Clinic’s throughout the region, for more information please call: Weston/Rib Mountain: 715.393.3900, Merrill 715.539.2350.

Ministry Medical Group, the physician-directed division of Ministry Health Care, consists of clinics located throughout northern and central Wisconsin.  Multiple locations offer convenient access to quality primary and specialty care services, along with consistently well-managed, cost-effective care.

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