Seasonal Influenza Overview Page

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Get FREE flu vaccine from
Napa County Public Health

    Recibe la vacuna contra la gripe GRATIS
    del Dept. de Salud Pública de Condado de Napa 

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General information on Seasonal Flu

What is Seasonal Influenza (Flu)?

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The best way to prevent seasonal flu is by getting a seasonal flu vaccination each year.

Every year in the United States, on average:

  • 5% to 20% of the population gets the flu
  • More than 200,000 people are hospitalized from flu-related complications
  • About 36,000 people die from flu-related causes

Some people, such as older people, young children, pregnant women and people with certain health conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease), are at increased risk for serious complications from seasonal flu illness.

How can I protect myself from getting the flu?

The single best way to prevent seasonal flu is to get vaccinated each year. Find out how to get FREE flu vaccine from Napa County Public Health.

The following good health and hygiene habits like can also help prevent respiratory illnesses like the flu:

  • Avoid close contact.

    Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.
  • Stay home when you are sick.

    If possible, stay home from work, school and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness.
  • Cover your coughs & sneezes. Cartoon Cover Cough

    Cover your mouth and nose into your upper sleeve when coughing and sneezing. Practicing this habit will help change the norm from coughing or sneezing into one’s hand. If you use a tissue, throw it away and wash your hands.
  • Wash your hands.

    Washing your hands for at least 30 seconds with soap and warm water will help protect you from germs. Use hand sanitizers if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose & mouth.

    Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Practice other good health habits.

    Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids and eat nutritious food.

 WHACK the Flu!

The Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program offers school health education programs and training with the goal to reduce school absences due to a decrease in illness spread through improper hygiene.

How can I prepare my family for a pandemic flu outbreak?

Be prepared

  • Gather a supply of food, water, and other supplies you will need in the event you do not have access to basic services for 2 weeks or more. A list of suggested supplies you can be found here on ready.gov. More information on preparedness and tips on caring for someone with influenza can also be found in Napa County's Pandemic Influenza Home Care Guide.
  • Teach your children good basic hygiene (washing hands, covering mouth when sneezing or coughing) and make sure they use it year-round. Set a good example by washing your hands often and covering coughs and sneezes with your shirt sleeve or a tissue.

Stay informed