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Basic Facts about Influenza

Seasonal Influenza: 

Do I Need the Vaccine?

The single best way to protect against seasonal flu is to get vaccinated each year. The flu vaccination is recommended for everyone 6 months and older. Vaccination is especially important for certain people who are high risk from seasonal flu.

People at high risk include:

  • Adults 65 years and older
  • Children younger than five years of age
  • Pregnant woman
  • Residents of nursing homes and other long term care facilities
  • People of any age with certain chronic medical conditions

The 2015-2016 seasonal flu vaccine is now available. Fall is the best time to get vaccinated, but getting vaccinated later in the flu season- in December, January, and beyond- still provides protection, as flu season normally peaks in January or later. More information from CDC about the flu

The prevention tips below will help Montanas protect themselves and others from infection by influenza viruses:

  • Get the flu vaccine every year.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soup and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • If you are sick with flu-like illness, CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care of for other necessities. (Your fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.)
  • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.