ELKO – Northeastern Nevada Regional Hospital provided 1,006 doses of flu vaccine to the community during the annual Drive-Thru Flu Shot Clinic last Saturday. This was almost a 25 percent increase from last year’s event when 809 flu shots were administered.
“It’s good to see our community getting serious about flu season,” said Jennifer Koopman, director of physician relations at NNRH and the coordinator of the event. “I think people want to do everything they can to keep influenza from spreading this winter. Getting a flu shot is an important part of that.”
Lower temperatures and persistent rainfall Saturday morning didn’t stop NNRH staff and volunteers from setting up a four-lane clinic in the hospital parking lot. As in previous years, participants could pull into a lane, fill out the paperwork, get their shot and then be on their way, all without exiting their vehicle.
“Our team really pulled together to keep things running efficiently,” said Koopman. “This was the highest volume of flu shots we’ve ever given in one day, but our staff handled it like the pros they are. Of course, we couldn’t have done it without the participation of the GBC nursing students,” Koopman added.
Student nurses from Great Basin College administered the majority of the flu shots under the watchful supervision of both their instructors and registered nurses from the hospital.
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“We are thrilled to continue our partnership with the GBC nursing program through big events like this, as well as during their regular clinical rotations here in the hospital,” Koopman said.
Although flu season typically peaks between December and February, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that most people older than 6 months should receive a vaccination by the end of October each year. While it is still possible to contract the flu after getting a vaccination, it is much less likely. Plus, flu symptoms are usually much milder in those who received a flu shot compared to those who did not.
In addition to getting a flu shot, there are a number of other steps that individuals can take to protect themselves and their families this flu season.
HOW TO LIMIT THE SPREAD OF THE FLU
- Wash your hands regularly
- with soap and water for 20 seconds, or use a hand sanitizer that is at least 60 percent alcohol-based.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth as much as possible.
- Avoid sharing food, cups or eating utensils.
- Disinfect your home furnishings, such as door knobs, light switches, children’s toys and play areas.
- Stay home from school or work if you are sick in order to prevent the spread of
- When coughing or sneezing, cover your nose and mouth with a tissue, your sleeve or your elbow, NOT with your bare
- Call your local hospital or your primary care provider with any questions.