ANCHOR LEAD: THE FLU SEASON ISN’T OVER YET, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Even though spring is appearing in many parts of the country, the flu season isn’t over yet. Michelle Bellantoni, a geriatrician at Johns Hopkins, says older folks especially can still benefit from receiving a flu shot.
BELLANTONI: We vaccinate our outpatients and our inpatients through the end of March, knowing that we still see cases the end of April the beginning of May, at least for the last two influenza seasons, we had confirmed cases the first week of May in our facility, and the reason its important to vaccinate is because the condition is often more mild than for the individuals who are not vaccinated, so they may have a briefer course and recover without the complications of pneumonia or dehydration or requiring hospitalization. :30
Vaccinating close contacts of older folks, including children, can help them avoid the flu as well. And good handwashing benefits everyone. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.