Be flu-free this year

October 15, 2013 —

It’s that time of year to enjoy the changing fall colors, carve pumpkins, go to football games and get shot – the flu shot, that is.

Influenza is a highly contagious viral infection that affects mainly the nose, throat, chest and lungs. It can range from mild to severe and may even lead to death. The single best way to prevent the flu is to get vaccinated every year. Given its symptoms of fever, headache, extreme tiredness, dry cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, achy muscles and more, doesn’t avoiding this bug sound like a no-brainer?

From the CDC: a graphical representation of the biology and structure of a generic influenza virus.

From the CDC: a graphical representation of the biology and structure of a generic influenza virus.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), flu seasons are unpredictable and flu viruses are constantly changing, so it’s not unusual for new flu virus strains to appear each year. What you can count on, however, is that flu epidemics happen every year. The more people who get the vaccine – recommended for everyone six months of age and older – the less severe those epidemics are likely to be.

As a medical/health sciences university, DMU strives to be a leader in modeling best practices in good health and disease prevention, including in fighting the flu. We’re proud that last year, 76 percent of our students and 67 percent of our employees were known to have obtained the flu vaccine. That means healthier, happier people; higher productivity; fewer sick days and less likelihood that students and employees spread the flu to others. This year, we’re going for a 100 percent flu-immune campus.

Go for 100 percent flu-free in your life, too. You can learn all about the influenza, test your flu I.Q, find flu shot clinics near you and more on the CDC website. Getting the vaccine is a great way to model best practice in health care, fight disease and save yourself some misery this winter.


Endlessly curious and easily entertained, Barb Dietrich Boose loves being a member of the friendly, fascinating DMU community and its creative communications team. The University's publications director and DMU Magazine editor, Barb is always on the hunt for story ideas, good books and new recipes to try out on her family, such as her surprisingly tasty pork-and-bean bars.

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