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Flu Facts! University of Toronto 2019-2020

December 29, 2019

Hi everyone! This is Agnes from the
Health Promotion Programs team at Health and Wellness at the St. George Campus.
We’ve just had a sweltering summer and a very unpredictable fall and now our
signs point to a challenging flu season this year. And here to talk to us today
about what you can do to protect yourself and those around you,
Penny Miller, a registered nurse, and Pamela Simmons, a registered nurse and
our clinical team lead. Thank you for having us. Great to be here. So, important part of
safeguarding the campus community is making sure we understand what influenza
is and how it spreads. Now Pamela, can you tell us more about that? The onset of
influenza usually comes with a headache, chills, a cough, and it could be followed
with high fever, muscle, aches and pains, throat irritation, and sometimes extreme
fatigue. A high fever is usually an indicator that it’s not just a cold, that
it probably is the flu. And a full recovery from the flu can be anywhere
from ten days and in some cases, longer, which means that you’re going to be
feeling unwell and probably missing classes. It’s a serious contagious viral
infection that can lead to other complications such as pneumonia. It’s
spread by droplets that are made when someone with the virus coughs or sneezes,
and you can also pick it up directly from someone even touch them or you
touch a contaminated surface. And because it’s a virus, it’s not treated with
antibiotics. They would not be effective. Wow that sounds very serious and that could
really dampen my days. So Penny, I will ask you the million dollar question.
Now how do I avoid getting influenza? Getting vaccinated is crucial. Well, it
doesn’t guarantee you won’t get the flu it’s key protection that I would
encourage most people to get. Of course, it’s also important to remember that getting the
vaccine is safe.You you can’t get influenza
from the vaccine but the flu shot will decrease the severity of illness if you
get the flu. With that in mind, getting vaccinated is just one of the many things you can do. Cough or sneeze into a tissue or into your sleeve and not your
hands. If you get sick, stay home. If you can, even if you’ve had the flu
shot. Also, wash your hands frequently or use hand sanitizer. The HealthyU Crew
student team will be setting up hand-washing
activity stations across campuses in November. Come out and check out the Glogerm test and to see your knowledge about hand-washing. Follow Student Life
on Instagram and Health and Wellness on Facebook to learn more. Thank you. So you
mentioned a flu shot… Now, this question goes to you. Sometimes, we hear folks say,
“I got fascinated last year, I’m good.” Why should I get it again? How would you
respond to that? Because the virus has changed from year to year and as well
your body’s immunity level can decrease over time, it’s important to get the
flu shot every flu season. Having said that, getting the flu shot does not
guarantee that you’re not going to get the flu. But if you do get the flu, it
shouldn’t be a severe. Wow, I’m convinced! So where can students go to get a
vaccination? You can get the flu shot for free. There’s a large free to everyone
clinic run by Toronto Public Health which is on November 8th at the Toronto
Reference Library. You can go online and book an appointment at You can also go to a pharmacy or with some walk-in clinics across the province.
Just bring your OHIP card with you and there are several walk-in clinics that
campus it will provide flu shot To international students as well, just
make sure that you bring your you have card with you or your OHIP card. Royal
Care and Medicall is one location that will give you a flu shot for international
students as well. Their address is 295 College Street, at the corner of College
and Spadina Avenue. They’ll also do out-of-province students. Good to know! New
this year, there’s also a drop-in clinic that’ll be available at various
locations across St. George Campus during the week of November 11th to 15th
These clinics are open to all students. Visit the Health and Wellness website to
learn more about flu clinics on campus and in the community, and including the
dates times and locations and what to bring with you. That’s great! Well I’m
very glad that we have an option to protect ourselves from the flu and a big
THANK YOU to Pamela and Penny for joining us today and telling us what we
can do to make sure our campus and the wider community stays healthy in
this flu season. Thanks for tuning in! Bye for now.

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