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Flu Prevention

flu-prevention

Every fall and winter, we recommend that children over 6 months old receive an influenza (flu) vaccine. The typical influenza illness consists of five to six days of very high fever, cough, body aches, and headaches. That alone is a burden on families as it results in a miserable child, missed parental workdays, and school absences. However, influenza has the potential to be MUCH more serious than that.

Influenza can cause an infection of the lining of the brain and spinal cord called meningitis. Influenza can also lead to serious bacterial pneumonias. These are just a few of the complications of influenza that kill people, even otherwise completely healthy people, and THEY HAPPEN! Influenza causes 6,000 to 30,000 deaths in the US every year. It happens to people in Oregon and has even happened to patients in our clinic. These illnesses and deaths are particularly heartbreaking because they could have been prevented!


Flu Clinics by Location

You’re making a great decision to protect your child against influenza! Influenza causes thousands of deaths in the US every year, and vaccinating is our best tool to protect the population.

Day Date Time
Tuesday 9/25/18 4-6pm
Saturday 9/29/18 10am-noon
Tuesday 10/2/18 4-6pm
Tuesday 10/9/18 4-6pm
Saturday 10/13/18 10am-noon
Tuesday 10/16/18 4-6pm
Tuesday 10/23/18 4-6pm
Saturday 10/27/18 10am-noon
Tuesday 10/30/18 4-6pm
Tuesday 11/6/18 4-6pm
Saturday 11/10/18 10am-noon
Tuesday 11/13/18 4-6pm

Strikethrough indicates all appointments for that day have been reserved.

Day Date Time
Wednesday 9/26/18 4-6pm
Wednesday 10/3/18 4-6pm
Sunday 10/7/18 10am-noon
Wednesday 10/10/18 4-6pm
Wednesday 10/17/18 4-6pm
Sunday 10/21/18 10am-noon
Wednesday 10/24/18 4-6pm
Wednesday 10/31/18 4-6pm
Sunday 11/4/18 10am-noon
Wednesday 11/7/18 4-6pm
Wednesday 11/14/18 4-6pm
Sunday 11/18/18 10am-noon

Strikethrough indicates all appointments for that day have been reserved.

Day Date Time
Wednesday 10/3/18 2-5:10pm
Saturday 10/6/18 9-11:30am
Tuesday 10/9/18 4-5:30pm
Saturday 10/13/18 10am-noon
Tuesday 10/16/18 4-5:30pm
Friday 10/19/18 9am-5pm
Saturday 10/20/18 10am-noon
Tuesday 10/23/18 2-5:30pm
Thursday 10/25/18 8-11:30am
Saturday 10/27/18 10am-noon
Tuesday 10/30/18 4-5:30pm
Saturday 11/3/18 10am-noon
Thursday 11/8/18 2-5:20pm
Saturday 11/10/18 9am-noon
Wednesday 11/14/18 2-5:20pm
Saturday 11/17/18 10am-noon
Tuesday 11/20/18 2-5:20pm
Wednesday 11/21/18 8:30-11:50am
Saturday 11/24/18 10am-noon
Tuesday 11/27/18 2-5:20pm
Saturday 12/1/18 10am-noon

Strikethrough indicates all appointments for that day have been reserved.

Day Date Time
Tuesday 10/2/18 9am-noon & 3-7pm
Thursday 10/4/18 3-7pm
Saturday 10/6/18 9am-12:30pm
Tuesday 10/9/18 3-7pm
Thursday 10/11/18 9am-noon & 3-7pm
Saturday 10/13/18 9am-12:30pm
Tuesday 10/16/18 9am-noon & 3-7pm
Thursday 10/18/18 3-7pm
Saturday 10/20/18 9am-12:30pm
Tuesday 10/23/18 9am-noon & 3-7pm
Thursday 10/25/18 3-7pm
Saturday 10/27/18 9am-12:30pm
Tuesday 10/30/18 9am-noon & 3-7pm
Thursday 11/1/18 3-7pm
Saturday 11/3/18 9am-12:30pm
Tuesday 11/6/18 9am-noon & 3-7pm
Thursday 11/8/18 3-7pm
Saturday 11/10/18 9am-12:30pm
Tuesday 11/13/18 9am-noon & 3-7pm
Thursday 11/15/18 3-7pm
Saturday 11/17/18 9am-12:30pm

Strikethrough indicates all appointments for that day have been reserved.


Flu Shot or Nasal Spray: What’s best?

Metropolitan Pediatrics offers two flu vaccine options for people over the age of two: a shot and nasal spray. We strongly recommend that our patients get the flu shot this year.

For the past two flu seasons, the nasal spray was less effective against H1N1 and H3N2 strains, so it was not offered. It has been improved and reintroduced for 2018-2019, but its effectiveness remains unclear. Because the injectable vaccine has given more consistent protection, the providers of Metropolitan Pediatrics and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that children receive the flu shot this year. If you have further questions, please talk with one of our health team members.


Why get vaccinated?

It’s important to remember that flu vaccines serve multiple purposes. They help prevent people from getting the flu to begin with, and they also reduce the severity of disease that is caused if children get the flu despite being vaccinated. Even in seasons when the vaccine is not as good at preventing disease, it can very significantly decrease serious complications—like pneumonia and meningitis—and death from influenza. In addition, getting the flu vaccine helps to protect our whole community.

Even though influenza vaccines aren’t required by school, we still recommend them as strongly as every other childhood vaccine. They are just as important as children’s scheduled shots. They are particularly important for kids under age two and kids with chronic health problems, like asthma, as these children are more susceptible to the complications of influenza.


Can I get the flu from the flu shot?

The flu shot cannot cause you to get the flu. Reactions are no different than any other vaccine. Most people have no reaction to the vaccine, but if a reaction occurs, it is typically mild, such as soreness at the injection site or a low grade, short-lived fever.


Protect your family!

Please protect your child and vaccinate them against influenza. If you have any questions about the vaccine, don’t hesitate to ask any of us! You can also check out the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/.

Thanks for doing your part to protect the health of your family and our community!


More about Influenza


Influenza usually starts suddenly and may include the following symptoms:

  • Fever (usually high)
  • Headache
  • Tiredness (can be extreme)
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Body aches
  • Diarrhea and vomiting (more common among children than adults)

Having these symptoms does not always mean that you have the flu. Many different illnesses, including the common cold, have similar symptoms.Almost every case of influenza (90% of people) will have cough and fever. Other common symptoms that may accompany cough and fever are sore throat, vomiting, and/or diarrhea. An infant less than 6 months of age with a fever (a temperature higher than 100.5°F) should be evaluated in the office.


Most people require home treatment for influenza.

The body is fighting a serious infection and needs rest.

Children with influenza are at increased risk for dehydration. To check your child’s fluid level, look in their mouth. If there is drool under the tongue, they are doing well. If the tongue appears dry and drool is not pooled under the tongue, please call us.

Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil) helps bring fevers down and treats pain such as muscle aches, sore throat, or headaches. Infants under 6 months of age should be given infant acetaminophen (Tylenol) only. DO NOT GIVE ASPIRIN.Antiviral medication may be needed in some specific cases of influenza. The medication must be started within 48 hours of symptoms to be effective. Those who may qualify for antiviral medication are children with chronic illnesses (such as asthma, diabetes, heart conditions, or epilepsy), children who are immunocompromised, and/or children under the age of 5.

Influenza is spread through droplets mostly from coughing and/or saliva. Cover your cough in your sleeve, not your hand. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water and/or use hand sanitizer throughout the day. Also remind your child not to share drinks.Your child should be seen in the office for illness if:

  • Under 6 months old with a fever higher than 100.5°F
  • Feverish for longer than 5 days
  • Exhibiting signs of dehydration
  • Experiencing difficulty breathing
  • Vomiting over and over
  • Lethargic (extremely tired; difficult to rouse)