It’s flu season and the influenza virus is going strong. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health reports that as of February 14, 2020, overall influenza-like activity remains very high. All regions of Massachusetts are reporting high activity.
The good news is that influenza strains that have been characterized in Massachusetts this season to date are covered by the current influenza vaccine. Getting a flu vaccine is your best protection, and it’s not too late.
If you feel the symptoms of the flu coming on, please do yourself and your colleagues, students, and fellow parishioners a favor and stay home. Flu is highly contagious. Symptoms of flu can include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, fatigue and sometimes vomiting and diarrhea. Some people with flu will not have a fever.
People with the flu may infect others from 1 day before getting sick to 5-7 days after. Children and people with weakened immune systems can shed virus for longer, and might still be contagious past 7 days, especially if they still have symptoms.
Weekly Flu Reports
Each week throughout flu season (October-May) the Department of Public Health publishes a Weekly Flu Report which indicates the impact of flu-like illness in Massachusetts. If you have additional questions about influenza activity or trends, please call (617) 983-6800 to speak with an epidemiologist.
The Department of Public Health offers a website where you can download resources flu for School Administrators and Childcare Professionals.
Check out this Flu Symptom Checklist