Top tips to avoid spreading the flu

File photo of a sick woman blowing her nose

File: With the flu season underway, you need to follow these tips to avoid getting sick.

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JOHANNESBURG - As the 'flu season' kicks into effect, resulting in increased levels of absenteeism at schools and offices around the country, takes a look at how to avoid getting infected. 

  • Avoid close contact with others especially those at high risk of having severe influenza.
  • Avoid close contact such as kissing or sharing drinks with people who are potentially ill.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with your hand or elbow to avoid spreading diseases.
  • Limit the number of visitors when ill.
  • Wipe down surfaces that are frequently touched or shared (doorknobs, remote controls) with a standard household disinfectant.
File photo of a sick man at work

File: If you've got the flu, it's best you stay at home!

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The flu vaccination is the most effective method for prevention and control of the virus, especially among children older than 2 and healthy adults.

Groups that would benefit from influenza vaccination: 

  • Pregnant women (including during the postpartum period),
  • HIV–infected individuals,
  • Individuals with tuberculosis,
  • Healthcare workers,
  • Residents of old-age homes, chronic care and rehabilitation institutions,
  • Persons aged 6 months - ≥18 years on long-term aspirin therapy and who therefore might be at risk for experiencing Reye syndrome after influenza virus infection,
  • Individuals who are morbidly obese (body mass index ≥40 kg/m2),
  • Adults and children who are family contacts of individuals at high risk of severe influenza.

Influenza vaccine dosage: 

  • Adults and children 9 years of age and older --- Adult dose (0,5ml) IMI Single dose.   
  • Children 3 years through 8 years --- Adult dose (0,5ml) IMI 1 or 2 doses.    
  • Children 6 months through 2 years --- 0.25ml (half the adult dose) IMI.

* Information provided by the Institute for Communicable Diseases


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