Category Archives: Influenza

  • Coronavirus and the Cerveza for Disease Control

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    No vaccine for coronavirus exists (yet?), but learning about this newest emerging disease and watching how the epidemic is handled can teach us a lot about public health strategies that include vaccines. So we invited Dr. Angela Rasmussen, a virologist at Columbia University, on to talk about coronavirus. Links from the episode: Interim CDC Flu […]

  • A Pharmacist on the Value of Vaccines

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    Ever since I was a child, I hated needles. I think many people would say the same thing. Even as I went through pharmacy school and learned about the value of vaccines in regard to public health, I kept thinking the same thing: “Seriously, does it always have to be a needle that makes things […]

  • Madi Survived Influenza, Barely

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    Shelle Allen’s healthy, happy daughter, Madi, was 12 years old when she asked to be picked up from a birthday party.  After a day, she figured Madi had “just the flu.” She never imagined that what would follow would be a months-long battle with influenza for Madi’s life. In the end, everything about their lives […]

  • Seriously, It’s Not Too Late to Get a Flu Shot

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    I’ve always felt that National Influenza Vaccination Week (NIVW, which is this week, falls strangely late in the year. The CDC advised everyone get their flu shots before the end of October–or a month in the past. I, myself, even told people to get their flu shots before they bought their Halloween candy. So where […]

  • What You Need to Know About Flu

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    Every year, I post on social media asking who among my friends needs to be pestered to get a flu shot. And every year, some smart aleck tells me he isn’t getting one because he doesn’t believe in flu shots. So what about flu shots? Are they worth it? Is influenza even a big deal? […]

  • An Alarm Bell You Cannot Wait On

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    A few weeks ago my five-month-old, Lucian, started showing symptoms of teething: mild fever, fussiness, not sleeping as well, and a small decrease in milk intake. We used some teething tabs, and when the fever didn’t go down, I gave him a small dose of Tylenol. After one more dose, his fever still wasn’t going […]

  • Everything You Want to Know About Influenza

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    Well, maybe not everything. But a lot! If the Voices for Vaccines Facebook page is a gauge, this flu season is seeing the circulation of more flu myths than usual. Is this flu strain particularly bad? Is this year’s flu vaccine a bad match? Is the flu worth preventing? Does the flu vaccine make you […]

  • Protection Begins Before Birth

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    I remember during my second pregnancy seeing an ad informing me that I could pass along whooping cough to my baby. At the time, I didn’t know what whooping cough was or what I could do about that. Looking back, I’m not even sure what they wanted me to do. Now, years too lot, I […]

  • What’s up with All These Outbreaks?

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    A few months ago, I came across an article claiming that we can blame the anti-vaccine movement for the mumps cases popping up in college campuses and communities across the country. As much as I wanted to have a villain to blame for outbreaks, I also needed to make sure that all my assertions were based […]

  • Remembering Ashley: An Influenza Story

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    On December 27, 2013, my life changed dramatically: I lost my only daughter, Ashley. She died from the flu at age twenty-three. Her death was completely devastating and horrible. I still can’t believe it happened. A beautiful girl with the most beautiful, piercing green eyes, Ashley was kindhearted, extremely smart, and the most stubborn and […]