The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) established the National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW) in 2005 to remind people that, although the holiday season has begun, it is NOT too late to get the flu shot . This year, NIVW is scheduled for December 3-9. A second objective of the observance week is to communicate with those who are at greater risk of complications if they acquire the flu.
"For people at high risk, getting the flu can be much more serious than for other people," says Dr. Bart Crosby with Navarro Family Clinic. "The flu is more likely to lead to hospitalization or death of people in high-risk groups, and their first line of defense is vaccination."
According to the CDC, people in the highest risk categories include:
• Children under 5, but especially under 2 years old
• Adults over 65
• Pregnant women, and even 2 weeks after delivery
• Nursing home residents and long-term care facilities  • People with chronic medical conditions, including but not limited to asthma, diabetes, and heart and lung disease
• People with weakened immune systems due to medications or medical conditions
• Obese patients: those with a BMI greater than 40
• Alaska Natives and Native Americans also appear to be at greater risk
. Immunization focus is not necessarily new, there are some developments and recommendations for the 2017 flu season. First, the CDC reports that available vaccines have been updated. to better match circulating viruses. Secondly, the recommendation to NOT use the nasal spray vaccine has been renewed this year: only injectable flu vaccines should be used for all populations.
"Preventing the flu in as many people as possible is our first priority," says Dr. Crosby. "But our medical staff is prepared to react quickly to high-risk patients who contract the virus." Work with your doctor to determine the best type of vaccine for you, and do not delay in getting medical attention if you suspect you have contracted the flu. "
The Navarro Regional Hospital laboratory has seen an increase in positive tests for influenza In the last three weeks, according to CDC's weekly flu report, Texas is experiencing localized flu activity, neighbors Oklahoma and Louisiana are seeing widespread outbreaks of flu, according to Navarro Regional Hospital's quality director, Cbadie Carter, RN. , flu symptoms are the most frequent: fever, chills, cough, sore throat, muscle pain and fatigue.