UP Health System – Portage Encourages Community to Get Vaccinated

October 10, 2018

To minimize the spread of influenza this fall and winter, UP Health System – Portage is encouraging all employees, medical personnel and community members to get vaccinated as soon as possible. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends annual flu vaccination for everyone six months and older, with any age-appropriate flu vaccine.

“Getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself from the flu this season and, in turn, protect your family and our community from illness,” said Deb Young, chief nursing officer (CNO) at UP Health System – Portage. “Vaccinations significantly decrease the likelihood of catching the flu and help minimize symptoms if you do get sick.”

The best ways to protect against the flu are to:

  • Get vaccinated and encourage your friends and family to do the same, especially those at greater risk for serious flu-related complications (children younger than five, adults 65 and older, pregnant women and those with certain chronic conditions like asthma, diabetes, heart and lung diseases and more).
  • Practice good health habits. Avoid close contact with others; stay home when you are sick; practice frequent hand washing; cough or sneeze into a tissue or your elbow; and avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Take flu antiviral drugs when prescribed by a physician. These drugs should be taken within 72 hours of when your symptoms begin.

This year, UP Health System – Portage is pleased to offer opportunities for individuals to get vaccinated at our Express Care walk-in clinic located on Sharon Avenue in Houghton open 7 days per week 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

In order to ensure the safety and wellbeing of patients and to help prevent the spread of infection, UP Health System – Portage also asks the community to be mindful when visiting friends and loved ones in the hospital. Specifically:

  • If you have flu-like symptoms, such as fever, cough or runny nose, please do not visit.
  • Remember to wash your hands before entering and exiting a patient’s room and after leaving the hospital.
  • If you are in the hospital for tests or procedures and have a flu-like illness (fever over 100 degrees with cough, body aches or sore throat), please ask for a mask.

UP Health System – Portage is committed to its mission of Making Communities Healthier by protecting patients, employees and volunteers, and limiting the spread of influenza in our community. For more information about the flu and effective prevention methods, visit http://www.cdc.gov/flu/.