As we head into flu season,
the Pasadena Public Health Department reminds us of the two most prevalent
strains this year.
The “seasonal flu” is a respiratory infection that attacks mostly in winter and
spring. A vaccine is available from physicians’ offices, pharmacies, the
Pasadena Public Health Department’s Immunization Clinic at 1840 N. Fair Oaks
Ave. and other locations.
The second strain, “pandemic H1N1 flu” (previously known as “swine flu”), is a
new virus that also causes respiratory infection. Since it first appeared last
spring, H1N1 has caused large outbreaks in many parts of the world. Because most
Americans don’t have immunity, it may impact us in the coming months.
At press time, the new H1N1 flu vaccine had been federally approved for
distribution nationwide through public health departments and select local
health providers. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has prioritized
groups that are more at-risk from the H1N1 flu, including pregnant women, adults
ages 25 to 64 who have chronic health disorders or compromised immune systems,
people who live with or care for babies younger than 6 months, workers in the
health care and emergency medical fields, and children and young adults ages 6
months to 24 years old.
For the latest updates, go to
www.flu.gov, or call 744-6012.
As always, the best prevention of each strain of flu is good health habits such
as washing your hands, covering your coughs and sneezes with your sleeve or a
tissue, and avoiding others when you’re sick and feverish.