Did you get a flu shot this winter? If not, you should, and it isn’t too late to realize the benefits.
According to state health officials and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Iowa is one of just a few states where the influenza isn’t widespread, but we’re not out of the woods yet: The flu season doesn’t peak in Iowa until mid-February.
“If you go get your vaccine now, you’ll start making some antibodies right away and you’ll have antibodies by this weekend,” Patricia Quinlisk, M.D., Iowa’s state epidemiologist, told KCCI-TV last week.
The arctic weather that’s parked over Iowa and the Midwest has a silver lining in likely curbing the spread of the flu here, added Dr. Quinlisk, a member of DMU’s global health adjunct faculty. Many schools were canceled because of polar temperatures after the holiday break, which meant school kids – those little flu incubators – weren’t together to spread the virus. That might just be a delay, however, so to be better safe than sorry, be sure you and your family members have their shots.
I’m happy to report that the DMU community embraced flu shots this winter. As of Dec. 5, 74 percent of our employees and 75 percent of our students got theirs. If you need further convincing, visit the CDC website for information on this year’s flu season, the vaccine and more.