Oakland, MD (January 23, 2018) — Garrett Regional Medical Center urges community members to follow recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for flu prevention and treatment tips during this year’s severe cold and flu season.
“Flu season is here in full, and there is literally no geographic area in the continental United States that isn’t seeing cases,” says Lance Rhodes, Director of Pharmacy at GRMC. “The flu strains this year seem to be particularly virulent. If you haven’t gotten a flu vaccine, you should probably consider doing so. It can make a significant difference in maintaining your health throughout the winter.”
While the single best defense against seasonal flu is to get an annual vaccination, there are additional safeguards and health habits you can follow:
- Avoid close contact. Avoid close contact with others if you are sick and with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you are sick. If possible, stay home from work, school, and errands when you are sick. This will help prevent spreading your illness to others.
- Cover your mouth and nose.Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick.
- Clean your hands. Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Practice other good health habits.Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, work or school, especially when someone is ill. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.
Flu antiviral drugs are available by prescription that can help prevent serious complications and reduce symptoms and their duration. Antibiotics are not necessary for common viruses such as a cold and sore throat, but bronchitis, ear, and sinus infections might call for an antibiotic regimen if recommended by your provider. Common bacterial infections like strep throat, urinary tract infection, and whooping cough are treated with antibiotics.
Flu symptoms can include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue. If you are experiencing flu-like symptoms, your provider or local urgent care can make the best treatment recommendations depending on the severity of your symptoms. If you haven’t been vaccinated yet, flu vaccines are still available.
Garrett Regional Medical Center offers flu vaccinations as well as primary and urgent care services at its Grantsville location, which is open seven days a week. For more information, please call 301-895-8750.
About Garrett Regional Medical Center (GRMC)
GRMC is a 55-bed, acute care facility serving the healthcare needs of Garrett County, Maryland, and surrounding communities in Pennsylvania and West Virginia. It includes a four-bed Intensive Care Unit, a 10-bed Sub-Acute Rehabilitation Unit, family-centered Maternity Suite, and a 13-bed Outpatient Surgical Unit with a four-bed Surgical Suite. With a staff of 400 professionals, GRMC is one of Garrett County’s largest employers. Additional information about GRMC can be found at its website: https://www.gcmh.com/.