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September 9, 2011

For More Information Contact

  • Gordon Green, M.D., director, West Piedmont Health District, 276-638-2311
  • Robert Parker, public information officer, Western Region, 540-381-7100, x 151 or 540-580-2960

SEASONAL FLU VACCINE AVAILABLE BEGINNING THIS MONTH AT LOCAL HEALTH DEPARTMENTS

(MARTINSVILLE, Va.) – The 2011-2012 flu season is just around the corner and local health departments are gearing up to offer this year’s flu vaccine at clinics in all local offices.

Vaccination clinics will be held as follows. Please call for an appointment.

  • Each Wednesday, starting Sept. 21, from 8:30 to 11 a.m. - Franklin County Health Department, 365 Pell Ave., Rocky Mount, 540-484-0292.
  • Each Friday, starting Sept. 23, from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. - Henry-Martinsville Health Department, 295 Commonwealth Blvd., Martinsville, 276-638-2311.
  • Each Thursday, starting Sept. 29, from 9 to 11 a.m. - Patrick County Health Department, 106 Rucker St., Stuart, 276-693-2070.

Health Department clinics accept Medicaid, Medicare, VA Premier and Anthem insurance. The cost for those without insurance is $30.
 
“Vaccination is the best way to prevent influenza and its potentially severe complications,” said Gordon Green, M.D., director of the West Piedmont Health District. “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Virginia Department of Health recommend that all persons over the age of six months be vaccinated annually. The vaccine takes full effect within two weeks and its benefits last for up to a year.”

Influenza, commonly called “the flu,” is a serious disease caused by the influenza virus that affects the respiratory tract. It is highly contagious  and generally spreads from person-to-person when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The virus can be transmitted even before flu-like symptoms appear. A person usually becomes sick one to three days following exposure to the virus. Typical flu symptoms include fever, dry cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, headache, muscle aches, and extreme fatigue.

Each year in the United States approximately 200,000 people are hospitalized due to flu illness, and flu-related deaths range from 3,000 to 49,000 each year -- averaging 24, 000 -- over the last three decades.

To minimize your risk of contracting flu, follow these simple steps:

  • get vaccinated;
  • wash your hands frequently and thoroughly;
  • cough or sneeze into your sleeve, not your hand; and
  • minimize contact with sick people if you’re well, and with well people if you’re sick.

For more information, visit www.vdh.virginia.gov or call the West Piedmont Health District at 276-638-2311.


Last Updated: 09-16-2011

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