August 3, 2021
Dear Resident/Responsible Party,
Each year thousands of people die from vaccine-preventable influenza in the U.S., despite the availability of an effective vaccine and many more are hospitalized. Now, more than ever, it is of the utmost importance for you and your loved one to receive the influenza vaccine. Influenza (flu) and COVID-19 are both contagious respiratory illnesses, but they are caused by different viruses. COVID-19 is caused by infection with a coronavirus first identified in 2019, and flu is caused by infection with influenza viruses.
You can protect your loved one from the flu by making sure you are immunized each year. A flu vaccination will protect you from getting the flu and will prevent you from passing this serious illness to our most vulnerable residents. Getting immunized against influenza demonstrates your commitment to preserving the health of your loved one.
If you do become sick with a cold or the flu virus, or any other contagious illness, you will not be permitted to enter until you recover. Many of our residents are frail and are at risk for severe complications from any cold or illness. The flu causes serious illness, hospitalization, and health problems that can lead to death. Per the Center for Disease Control a mandatory mask protocol for all indoor visits is in place for the well-being of our residents, visitors and staff until further notice.
Influenza (Flu) can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Flu is different from a cold. Flu usually comes on suddenly. People who have flu often feel some or all of these symptoms:
- fever* or feeling feverish/chills
- sore throat
- runny or stuffy nose
- muscle or body aches
- fatigue (tiredness)
- some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.
*It’s important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever.
Cristina Tarbox, LNHA, MHA, MPS
Nursing Home Administrator