Concentra Offers Tips to Protect Against the Flu Before it Arrives

09/08/2011

ADDISON, Texas — September 8, 2011 - The flu season is just around the corner, and like the illness itself, it can be very unpredictable. To help keep the flu from infecting you, Concentra, a subsidiary of Humana Inc., is sharing some simple preventive measures every person can take to protect themselves before the flu season is in full swing.

Seasonal influenza, or the flu, is an extremely contagious respiratory infection and often includes symptoms like high fever, cough, and full body aches. Flu symptoms are more severe than those of colds and can cause medical complications that result in an average of 36,000 deaths each year. But there are some easy steps each person can take to protect against the flu:

  • Monitor flu outbreaks in your communityGoogle Flu Trends and the CDC offer weekly updates on areas that show increased cases of influenza.
  • Encourage frequent hand washing — flu viruses can live on surfaces for up to 48 hours, so frequent hand washing can help to protect against the influenza viruses, and can protect people from other germs that can cause further complications.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes — the flu virus is most easily spread from one person to another through inhaling respiratory droplets expelled by ill persons. Covering coughs and sneezes traps the germs, and keeps the spread of germs to a minimum.
  • Get a flu vaccine — this year’s flu vaccines have already been released and have completely new formulations for this year’s strains.
  • Seek medical attention for those who display flu-like symptoms — individuals who begin feeling ill, have a high fever, and complain of fatigue should have a medical evaluation, available from Concentra Urgent Care or other medical providers.

"With an all-new flu vaccine available this fall, it’s more important than ever for the public to be protected against influenza," said Senior Vice President of Medical Operations Bill Lewis, M.D. "By providing employers and patients with influenza vaccine, along with some simple tips to reduce the incidence of seasonal flu cases, physicians and public health officials can focus on limiting the impact of the flu season and keeping patients well."

Flu shots are available at all Concentra Urgent Care locations across the country. The company is also scheduling flu vaccine clinics at employer worksites across the nation to assist employers in keeping their employees safe and healthy. For more information about this year’s seasonal flu strain, including popular myths and facts about influenza, go to Concentra’s flu resources page or visit your local Concentra medical center. You can also find us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/Concentra) and Twitter (@ConcentraHealth) to get flu updates and other health and wellness tips.