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Flu Prevention

Influenza (or "the flu") is one of the most common communicable disease.

You can protect yourself and your family:

  • Get the flu shot. The vaccine reduces your risk of getting sick from influenza and from spreading the virus to others. Because influenza viruses change from year-to-year, it is important to get vaccinated every year, preferably in the fall before influenza season starts.
  • Cover your cough and sneezes. Influenza is mostly spread by people coughing or sneezing on you! Cough or sneeze into your arm or a tissue - and remember to toss the tissue in the trash.
  • Wash your hands often and avoid touching your face. While the virus doesn’t live long on surfaces like doorknobs or hand rails, it can survive up to 12 hours and spread that way.
  • Stay at home if you become sick--at least 24 hours after a fever.
  • People who are pregnant, under age 2, or over age 65, and who become ill with flu symptoms should call their health provider right away to see if they can begin antiviral medication.

For information on how to prevent the flu or find where to get the flu shot: or call 211. 

For Providers: Healthcare providers will find helpful information through the state here. Disease reporting is only for hospitalized patients. State public health laboratory testing is limited so contact your local health department for guidance. For information on which wholesale distributors or manufacturers have influenza vaccine in stock, check the Influenza Vaccine Availability Tracking System. Additional information is also available through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or click here for flu updates.
Click here to view the full-sized flu season infographic.

Why is getting vaccinated so important?

Vaccination is the most effective way to stay healthy and avoid catching the flu. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older should receive an annual influenza vaccination. Children 6 months through 8 years may need two doses depending on previous flu vaccine history, so it is important to talk to your provider. A seasonal flu shot  is especially recommended for people with chronic medical conditions, pregnant women, people living or caring for babies six months and younger or people who are unable to be vaccinated because of health reasons and all health care workers.

Where can I get vaccinated?

Flu vaccine is available from health care providers, local health departments and many pharmacies. To find a flu shot provider near you, visit or or call 1-800-SAFENET (1-800-723-3638).

Additonal Resources

If you have questions about this information, visit the Clackamas County Immunization Program, 503-655-8799.

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