An annual flu vaccination is especially important for people at high risk of serious flu complications, including young children, pregnant women, people with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes heart or lung disease, and older adults. Seasonal flu vaccine is important for health care workers and other people who
live with or care for high risk people to prevent giving the flu to those at high risk.

The Winnebago County Health Department’s fee for a flu shot is $30.00 while the pneumonia shot is $45.00.
“Last year in 2008, the Winnebago County Health Department gave over 13,000 flu vaccinations and it is our
goal this year, to give over 15,000 shots,” said Winnebago County Health Department Health Promotion Coordinator, Tammy Rieger.

The Winnebago County Health Department would like to remind you that the seasonal vaccination will not protect you from the novel H1N1 flu.  In mid-October when the H1N1 vaccine becomes available, the vaccinations will be given at no charge, by the Winnebago County Health Department. Private provider’s vaccinators may charge a small administrative fee.

Symptoms of H1N1 and seasonal flu are very similar, and include fever, body aches, headache, sore throat,
cough, runny/stuffy nose, chills, fatigue, and possibly diarrhea and or vomiting. The spread of the H1N1 virus is thought to be happening in the same way that seasonal flu spreads. Flu viruses are spread mainly from person-
to-person through coughing or sneezing by people with influenza. Sometimes people may become infected by touching something with flu viruses on it and then touching their mouth or nose.

According to the CDC, it is more important than ever for people to get both the seasonal flu and H1N1 vaccinations as a way to ensure that they stay healthy. While it is well known that the seasonal flu virus affects thousands of people in the US annually, the H1N1 virus is so new that people who are usually able to fight off the seasonal flu virus may end up ill from the H1N1 virus-with some of those also contract H1N1 developing health complications. Getting both vaccinations as soon as they are available is a sensible way to protect against becoming ill from the seasonal and or the H1N1 virus during this coming flu season.

The Winnebago County Health Department is working closely with State, local, and community health partners in coordinating the response to the seasonal and H1N1 co-circulating flu season. It is our goal to prevent and protect our community from the effects of influenza viruses, said Dan Reilly, Public Health Emergency Response Coordinator for Winnebago County Health Department.

The Winnebago County Health Department Administrator, Mr. Mike Bacon, emphasized the importance protecting yourself and your family. “This can be as simple as following the three C's, Mr. Bacon said. The three C's stand for CLEAN, COVER and CONTAIN. These include the following steps:

Cleanthoroughly wash your hands frequently to prevent the spread of germs.
Cover; cover your cough and sneeze with a tissue or sleeve.

Containcontain your germs by staying home if you are sick.According to Mike Bacon, There is much each of us can do to prevent the spread of flu in the workplace, schools and throughout the community. Persons with flu-like symptoms should stay home from school, work, and social gatherings, until 24 hours after fever subsides.

People release more of the flu virus when they have a fever. So by staying home during this time will be especially important to not spread the flu to co-workers, friends or fellow students.

If you have any questions regarding getting the seasonal or H1N1 flu vaccinations, please see your healthcare provider or contact the Health Department. You may also log on to the following websites for information.

Centers for Disease Control at:
Illinois Department of Public Health
Illinois Emergency Management Agency
Winnebago County Health Department at:
Health and Human Services at: