Telluride Med Center: Flu Vaccinations Here: Schedule Now!

For updates onCovid-19 in the Telluride region, go to tellmed.org/coronavirus. And for San Miguel County updates, go here.

It is time to get your flu shot. The following is a note from the Telluride Medical Center‘s Eric Johnson, MS, FNP-BC.

Flu vaccinations are here — it’s time to schedule your appointment

•  The fastest way to get on our schedule is through the patient portal here.

•  Update all of your demographic information (on the patient portal)

•  Give us a few dates you would be available

•  We will put  you on the schedule and message you back on the portal

•  If you are not on the patient portal, please call us, 970-728-3848.

•  We expect high dose vaccinations (for those over 65+) to be back in stock soon

Please note:

•  Be patient. The phone may ring multiple times, but we will answer.

•  We may take your information and call you back with appointment times.

•  Have your insurance card in front of you. We will take your information over the phone and ask you to email a picture of the front and back of your insurance card and ID to medicalrecords@tellmed.org. ( No other communication will be accepted at this email address.)

What the flu is and what the flu is not:

The flu is not: nausea, vomiting and diarrhea (commonly called stomach flu).

The flu is: a respiratory virus that typically circulates in North America as early as October and lasts through May. It’s a primarily lower respiratory (lung) illness characterized by high fever, cough, nasal congestion, body aches, and headache.

The flu can cause mild to severe respiratory illness. Severe cases of influenza can lead to hospitalization and death.

Influenza is caused by a virus, therefore, antibiotics are not helpful in treating the flu.

There are two types of influenza, Type A and B. Every year the specific circulating strains change and the annual vaccine is formulated to match those strains. This is why a yearly flu shot is needed and recommended.

Influenza can be a serious illness, particularly in children and older adults. Currently there is minimal influenza activity in the United States, meaning this is a good time to get immunized.

Every year an average of over 200,000 people are hospitalized with influenza and some years this has reached almost a half a million hospitalizations. Additionally, up to 49,000 deaths can occur annually from influenza, mostly in the elderly, persons with serious medical conditions, and the very young. This makes it vitally important for the people who are around those individuals to be immunized to protect those vulnerable persons.

Anyone can get the flu, but it’s the elderly, very young and those who are immunocompromised, or have health conditions like asthma; COPD; cancer; and heart disease who are at an especially high risk for complications.

Influenza virus spreads by respiratory droplets created when an infected person coughs, sneezes or speaks.

These droplets can spread up to six feet away. Most healthy adults can infect others one to two days before symptoms develop and 5-7 days after becoming sick. That means we can spread the virus even before we know we are sick.

Where can you get a flu shot?

You can make an appointment at the Telluride Medical Center for an upcoming flu clinic, or you can visit any major chain pharmacies.

We will submit the cost of the flu shot to your insurance. If you do not have insurance or it is not a covered benefit, the cost of the flu shot is $25 again.

Healthy Habits to Live By

•  Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Keep a social distance from everyone outside your household.

•  Stay home from work, school and errands when you are sick. Read Dr. Diana Koelliker’s “Four Rules” covering how to know when to stay home.

•  Wear a mask in public spaces.

•  Cover your mouth or nose when coughing or sneezing.

•  Wash your hands frequently.

•  Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

•  Practice other good health habits. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, work or school, especially when someone is ill. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids and eat nutritious foods.

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