Keeping Seniors Safe from Flu and Other Viruses
Just two short years ago, most people were having virtual celebrations in the interest of keeping each other safe from the COVID-19 virus. Gratefully this year, many had the opportunity to spend the holidays with friends and family. Large in person gatherings are again welcome. Unfortunately, that means an increased chance in getting a virus. Older adults are more at risk for severe illness during influenza outbreaks. Here are a few tips to prevent the transmission of influenza and other infectious viruses.
- Vaccination- keep up to date on your vaccines and booster shots
- Increase hand washing
- Avoid touching your face
- Wear a mask when in highly populated area
- Stay home if you or someone you live with is not feeling well
- Seek medical treatment if you suspect you have influenza or COVID-19- antiviral treatments may be available
Senior Living Guidance
Many senior living facilities offer vaccination clinics for staff and residents. When a county has a high rate of transmission for COVID -19 assisted living communities require visitors and staff to wear masks upon entering the building. If there is an outbreak of influenza or COVID-19, facilities may stop communal dining and other activities to stop the spread. Most senior living facilities will increase cleaning of common spaces like restroom and living room areas. Senior living facilities cannot restrict visitors apart from visitors who show signs of illness upon entering the facility.
The Minnesota Department of Health is committed to sharing important information about influenza and COVID-19. For resources on influenza visit: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/flu/index.html
For the latest information on COVID-19 visit: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html
Stay safe and take the necessary steps to prevent you or someone you care about from becoming ill.