Get Vaccinated Now Before Flu Season Peaks
North Georgia – Last year, Georgia experienced one of the worst flu seasons in recent history. This year, even before the typical peak of flu season, the CDC reports that Georgia is already experiencing high and widespread numbers of flu-like illnesses and confirmed cases.
North Georgia Health District officials urge residents to vaccinate before the peak of flu season, which usually begins in this region by mid-January and lasts through the end of February, possibly longer. It takes a couple of weeks for flu vaccine to reach its full protective potential within the body, so now is a critical time to get the shot for those who still need one.
Influenza can be a serious disease that leads to hospitalization and sometimes death. Regardless of race, age, gender or ethnicity, anyone can get sick from the flu. Those especially at risk are adults 65 years of age and older, children younger than 5, pregnant women, and people with certain chronic diseases such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease or other long-term medical conditions.
Even healthy children and adults can get very sick from the flu, but flu vaccine is the best protection.
Both regular quadrivalent flu vaccine, which protects against the four strains of flu virus that are most commonly circulating this season, and high dose flu vaccine for people age 65 and older are available at local health departments in Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties (contact information for each of these health departments is at www.nghd.org). The health departments accept several forms of health insurance as well as Medicare and Medicaid so that vaccination is cost-free to the client. For people without healthcare coverage, regular flu vaccine is $25 and high dose flu vaccine is $65.
Symptoms of seasonal flu may include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, headache, tiredness and/or muscle aches. People who might have flu – particularly if they are in the groups listed above at risk for severe disease and complications – should seek medical care and start antiviral medication as soon as possible.
In addition to a flu shot, there are simple things anyone can do to help prevent getting or spreading the flu:
- Wash your hands and your children’s hands frequently, especially after contact with other people.
- Use a tissue to cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze and dispose of the tissue afterward, or cough or sneeze into your sleeve if no tissues are available.
- Clean your hands after you cough or sneeze, even if you use a tissue. Use soap and water or an alcohol-based hand cleaner if soap and water are not available and your hands are not visibly dirty.
- When possible, stay home if you get the flu.
- Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
But most importantly, before flu season peaks, people should make it a top priority to go to or call their county health department or health care provider to be vaccinated. For more information on immunization, visit the Georgia Department of Public Health website at http://dph.georgia.gov/influenza-what-you-need-know.
Pickens County Health Department presents
BACK TO SCHOOL BASH HEALTH CLINIC
on July 24th
One-Stop Spot for School State Health Requirements!
Is your child ready for the upcoming school year? The Pickens County Health Department is conducting a Back To School Bash Health Clinic on Tuesday, July 24th from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the public health department in Jasper. The required Hearing, Dental, Vision and BMI/Nutrition Screenings will be available: Total cost for screenings is $50. Also, immunizations will be provided for school-age children for $21.90 each (for uninsured or underinsured). Medicaid, including Amerigroup, Caresource, Peachstate and Wellcare, and Peachcare for Kids are accepted. Each child who attends gets a FREE Goody Bag with Crayons, Coloring Book, Toothbrush, Pamphlets and Coupons! The Pickens County Health Department is located at 60 Health Way in Jasper. For more information or to check on additional insurances accepted, call (706) 253-2821.
Jasper, GA – WIC hosted their annual drive in Pickens County on Tuesday, July 18, at 8:00 A.M. The event allows families to come to the local health department to receive resources in the community they may not be aware of.
Local agencies such as Ferst Foundation, Pickens County Library, Habitat for Humanity, Parents as Teachers, and Snap ED, a division of the UGA Extension Service, set up in front of the health department with applications and brochures.
Valerie Peel, Jan Coleman-Mitchell, Brooke Rose, Jordan Thompson, Jan Coleman, Rachel Hamrick, Ethan Sturgeon ,and Becca Pritchett
These agencies attend the event to make their services available, and to allow residents to receive a bag of fresh, local produce from our local farmers market.
Ferst Foundation provides children a free book every month from ages zero to five. The program is made possible through local volunteer teams.
Along with Ferst, Parents and Teachers came to the event. They provide information, support, and encouragement parents need to help their children develop optimally during the crucial early years of life.
These are just a couple of examples of the type of resources provided at the WIC Event. Even those who weren’t able to make it this year are still able to get more information on these agencies by visiting or calling the health department.
Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com
Pickens County Health Department presents
BACK-TO-SCHOOL BASH Health Clinic
Prepare your child for the upcoming school year! The Pickens County Health Department will conduct a BACK-TO-SCHOOL BASH Health Clinic on Tuesday, July 18th from 1 to 6 p.m. The health department is located at 60 Health Way in Jasper. This is the One-Stop Spot for school students’ state health requirements. The clinic is offering required Hearing, Dental, Vision and BMI/Nutrition Screenings and providing Immunizations for school-age children. The clinic is accepting Medicaid (including AmeriGroup, PeachState and WellCare) and PeachCare for Kids. For more information or to check on additional insurances accepted, please call (706) 253-2821.