Having started early this year, the flu season is well underway. According to recent reports, the flu is prominent in 23 states already. There have been 2.6 million cases of the flu and 23,000 hospitalizations. Unfortunately, there have also been approximately 1,300 deaths. Experts say that there is a “B” strain of flu that has been affecting many people. Older adults, however, are most impacted by the “A” strain. Because the flu is particularly dangerous for seniors, it’s important to know what is expected from the flu season this year and what can be done to protect your aging relative. Below are some questions you may have about the flu and the important answers you need to know.
When is Flu Season?
It’s possible to get the flu at any time of the year. However, flu season typically starts in October and continues through March or April.
When Should Older Adults Get a Flu Shot?
Getting a flu shot too early can result in reduced protection later in the flu season. Experts suggest that late September may be the best time. However, it’s never too late to get a flu shot, so if your older family member hasn’t gotten one yet, it’s still a good idea for them to get vaccinated during this flu season.
Where is the Flu Prevalent So Far This Year?
As of December 6 (the most recent information available), the flu season has been reported in the following 23 states:
Where Can Older Adults Get the Flu Vaccination?
Flu vaccinations are widely available in a variety of places. Some places your aging relative can get a shot are:
- Doctor’s office.
- Health department.
Seniors covered by Medicare Part B can receive the flu vaccine at no cost, with no copay or deductible.
Can Senior Care Help Older Adults to Prevent the Flu?
Senior care providers can certainly help your older family member to avoid getting the flu this year. First, if the older adult has not had their flu shot yet, a senior care provider can help them to make an appointment and drive them to it. In addition, senior care providers can remind them to use good hygiene habits to prevent the flu, such as washing their hands frequently and carrying hand sanitizer when they go out in public. Senior care providers can also wipe down surfaces in the older adult’s house to clean away flu germs that may be lingering.
If you or an aging loved-one is considering Senior Care in Fitchburg, WI please contact the caring staff at Agape Senior Services Madison today. (608) 841-1004