PRESS RELEASE

City of Long Beach 
Public Information Office
333 W. Ocean Blvd, 
Long Beach, CA 90802

12/29/2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEPress Release # CM:122917A
Subject:
City Health Officer Urges Residents to get Vaccinated Against Flu Strain that Could Cause Severe Disease
Contact:
Jennifer A. Gonzalez
Outreach & Risk Communication Specialist/PIO
Department of Health & Human Services
562.570.4290
Jennifer.Gonzalez@longbeach.gov






The City Health Officer is reminding Long Beach residents that it is not too late to get vaccinated to protect against the flu, as the strain of influenza circulating this year is known to cause severe illness.  

“Flu season typically peaks in January and February, so there is still time to protect yourself and your family from the flu,” said Anissa Davis, MD, MPH, Long Beach City Health Officer. “Getting the flu vaccine can prevent people from getting sick, or may lessen the severity of symptoms for those who become ill.”

Reports of flu are now widespread throughout California, according to the California Department of Public Health. Los Angeles County has already reported 19 influenza-associated deaths in the 2017-2018 flu season, which is a sober reminder that flu can lead to serious illness.

Early surveillance conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicates that the primary flu strain this year is influenza A (H3N2), which has been associated with higher rates of hospitalizations and deaths in persons 65 years and older and young children.

The CDC recommends flu vaccine for everyone over six months of age, especially those at greatest risk for complications and those who live with or care for these individuals:

  • Pregnant women.
  • Children younger than five years of age.
  • Adults 65 years and older.
  • People with weakened immune systems.
  • Those with certain medical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, lung disease, or conditions affecting the nervous system.
  • People who are overweight or obese.
  • Those working or living in nursing homes or long-term care facilities.
  • Health care personnel.
  • Child care workers.

Symptoms of flu include: fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, body aches, headaches, and fatigue. In addition to getting the flu vaccine, practicing good hygiene such as washing hands, covering one’s cough, and staying home when sick can prevent those around you from becoming ill.

The Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services (Health Department) continues to vaccinate residents in preparation for the upcoming flu season. Since October, nearly 3,500 vaccines have been given at 25 different flu vaccination clinics throughout the City, including a drive-through vaccination clinic. In addition, the Health Department has provided almost 3,000 doses of flu vaccine to clinics throughout Long Beach to distribute to their patients.

For more information about the flu, please visit http://bit.ly/2lmwZQP. The Health Department will be giving vaccinations at the Long Beach Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade on Saturday, January 13, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.

About Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services

The mission of the Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services is to improve quality of life by promoting a safe and healthy community in which to live, work and play. Long Beach Health is one of only three city-run health departments in California, which allows for better engagement with residents, neighborhoods, businesses and community partners, and fosters a greater understanding of the City's strengths. For more information, visit us at www.longbeach.gov/health, "Like" us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.