MARQUETTE COUNTY — As the leaves fall from trees and we start to see snow in the sky beckoning the winter season, another season is approaching. Something everyone needs to be mindful of is the flu.
But you don’t have to be the one coughing and sneezing if you take precautions to stop the spread of flu. The Marquette County Health Department stands firm when they say getting vaccinated is the best thing you can do for yourself and others.
“Our vaccination rates for kids are pretty good because of the flu clinics that we do,” said Health Department Immunization Coordinator, Kathleen Mell. “Overall, the flu rates for the UP are not good, people are not getting the vaccine when it’s available – that’s one thing I’ve seen is flu vaccination rates for the UP could be much better.”
Locally, there are plenty of locations to receive the vaccination that takes just minutes.
“We’re very excited at the Health Department- we have a march in Monday from 1:00pm-4:00pm every Monday through December to come in and get a flu shot, there’s no appointments it’s a walk in basis. I know pharmacies have the flu shot and your primary care doctors have the flu shot.”
Besides getting the vaccination, there are a number of ways to stop the spread of germs. By taking just a few extra moments to ensure you’re washing your hands for at least 20 seconds after using the restroom, and keeping common areas and workspaces sanitized, you’re already putting a major dent in the spread of the flu.
Mell also adds that her personal experiences in dealing with the flu have guided her in her practices today in the UP.
“In my own personal note – I had the flu when I was 28 years old, I was a marathon runner, and I nearly died. I have not missed a flu shot in over 25 years. It’s a very important preventative measure to reduce the risk and complications of flu.”