Flu season is here.
Last year was one of the worst flu seasons in recent memory, with 28 deaths and more than 1,400 flu-related hospitalizations, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health.
Every flu season is different, and influenza infection often affects each individual differently.
“Everyone 6 months and older is recommended to get a flu vaccination annually,” said J. Dean Greeson, M.D., the senior vice president and chief medical officer of the Peach State Health Plan.
Greeson shares three major ways to fend off flu:
• Get vaccinated. Many people put off getting a flu shot, but it is a important defense. Different flu shots are approved for people of different ages. Check the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s influenza page to get an idea of what’s recommended.
• Wash your hands. This may seem obvious, but handwashing is one of the most effective ways to remove germs and stop them from spreading. It’s important to lather up and scrub for at least 20 seconds. Don’t have soap and water handy? Use a hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.
• Take antiviral medication if you’re exposed to the flu. Antiviral medications are prescription pills, liquids or inhalers used to prevent or treat flu viruses.
For more information on Peach State Health Plan, go to www.pshp.com