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The Flu and You Influenza Annual Training To every patient, every time, we will provide the care that we would want for our own loved ones. Health, healing.

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Presentation on theme: "The Flu and You Influenza Annual Training To every patient, every time, we will provide the care that we would want for our own loved ones. Health, healing."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Flu and You Influenza Annual Training To every patient, every time, we will provide the care that we would want for our own loved ones. Health, healing and hope.

2 Objectives This module will cover the following content: What is Influenza? Signs and Symptoms Complications of Influenza Vaccination Respiratory Etiquette Treatment Patient Care

3 Influenza Influenza is also known as the “flu.” It is a contagious virus that can cause severe respiratory infection in its host. The flu is NOT a stomach virus.

4 Symptoms of Influenza People who have the flu often feel some or all of these symptoms: Fever, or feeling feverish/chills Cough Sore throat Runny or stuffy nose Muscle or body aches Headaches Fatigue (very tired) Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults. *It’s important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever.

5 How Flu Spreads Most experts believe that flu viruses spread mainly by droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk. These droplets can land in the mouths, noses and eyes of people who are nearby. Less often, a person might also get flu by touching a surface or object that has flu virus on it and then touching their own mouth, eyes or nose. Droplet Spread Coughing and sneezing generate the droplets that carry the virus.

6 Period of Contagiousness You can pass on the flu to someone else before you know you are sick, as well as while you are sick. Most healthy adults may be able to infect others beginning 1 day before symptoms develop and up to 5-7 days after becoming sick. Children and people with weakened immune systems, are able to infect others for an even longer time.

7 Complications of Flu Complications of flu can include: Bacterial pneumonia Ear infections Sinus infections, dehydration Worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes

8 Severity of Flu On average, the flu virus kills 36,000 Americans every year. ○During a mild flu season, the U.S. averages 17,000 deaths. ○During a severe flu season, over 50,000 Americans die. Usually the victims are 65 years of age and older. With H1N1 in , most deaths were among those younger than 65 years of age.

9 Flu Prevention The best way to prevent disease is to be “immune” to that disease. The single best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu vaccine each season. About two weeks after the vaccination, antibodies develop that protect against influenza virus infection.

10 Influenza Vaccines The “flu shot” – an inactivated vaccine (containing killed virus) that is given with a needle. The seasonal flu shot is approved for use in people 6 months of age and older, including healthy people, people with chronic medical conditions and pregnant women. The “nasal-spray flu vaccine” – a vaccine made with live, weakened flu viruses that do not cause the flu (sometimes called LAIV for “Live Attenuated Influenza Vaccine”). LAIV is approved for use in healthy people 2-49 years of age who are not pregnant.

11 Healthcare Workers and Vaccination GBMC has made the seasonal influenza vaccine mandatory to protect our patients, you and your family. This policy was adopted because it is know that the flu vaccine is very safe, with very few contraindications. Also, studies show that when healthcare workers are vaccinated, patients have a decreased risk of developing the flu.

12 When Should I Be Vaccinated? Yearly flu vaccination should begin as soon as the vaccine is available. It should continue throughout the flu season which can last as late as May. This is because the timing and duration of the flu season varies. While the flu season can begin as early as October, most of the time seasonal flu activity peaks in January or later.

13 What are the Contraindications to Vaccination? People who have a severe (anaphylactic) allergy to chicken eggs. People who have had a severe (anaphylactic) reaction to an influenza vaccination in the past. People who develop Guillian-Barré syndrome (GBS) within six weeks of getting an influenza vaccine previously. Children younger that 6 months of age (influenza vaccine is not approved for use in this age group). People who have a moderate or severe illness with a fever should wait to get vaccinated until their symptoms lessen.

14 High Risk Groups that Should Be Vaccinated Everyone 6 months of age and older should get vaccinated against the flu as soon as the seasonal vaccine is available. People at high risk of serious flu complications include young children, pregnant women, people with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease and people 65 years and older. Vaccination of high risk persons is especially important to decrease their risk of severe flu illness. Vaccination is also important for health care workers, and other people who live with or care for high risk people to keep from spreading flu to high risk people. Children younger than 6 months are at high risk of serious flu illness, but are too young to be vaccinated. People who care for them should be vaccinated instead.

15 Influenza Prevention Respiratory Etiquette Other ways you can prevent Influenza include good respiratory hygiene. ○Cover your cough/sneeze with your elbow (not your hands). ○Wash your hand frequently. ○Discard your tissues quickly into the appropriate trash receptacles. ○Keep 3 feet distance between someone coughing and sneezing.

16 Treatment for Influenza If you or a family member get the flu, the CDC recommends the following: ○Stay home from work and keep your children home from school. ○Drink plenty of fluids and get plenty of rest. ○Usually over-the-counter anti-fever medications help with the symptoms. ○Antiviral medications may sometimes be prescribed to help lessen the duration of the infection.

17 Emergency Warning Signs In Children: Fast breathing or trouble breathing Bluish skin color Not drinking enough fluids Not waking up or not interacting Being so irritable that the child does not want to be held Flu-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough Fever with a rash In Adults Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen Sudden dizziness Confusion Severe or persistent vomiting Flu-like symptoms that improve but then return with fever and worse cough

18 Flu Patients at GBMC Seasonal Influenza patients are maintained on “droplet precautions.” Droplet precautions requires wearing a mask/visor when working within 3 feet of the patient. A droplet precautions sign will hang on the patient’s door, notifying you of the need to wear a mask/visor.


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