HEALTH

Health and Human Services warning Utahns to be prepared for flu season

Sep 13, 2023, 1:06 PM | Updated: 1:25 pm

BURBANK, CALIFORNIA - DECEMBER 06: A cold and flu medicine shelf is empty in a CVS pharmacy on Dece...

BURBANK, CALIFORNIA - DECEMBER 06: A cold and flu medicine shelf is empty in a CVS pharmacy on December 6, 2022 in Burbank, California. Southern California is being hit by a wave of three viruses, the flu, COVID-19 and RSV, with the CDC classifying the state of California as having a ‘high’ level of flu activity. Shortages of basic cold and flu remedies are being seen in some pharmacies in the region ahead of the holiday season. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)

(Mario Tama/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE— The Department of Health and Human Services is encouraging Utahns to protect themselves from respiratory illness this flu season.

Rich Lakin, the Utah Department of Health and Human Services immunization director, said staying healthy can be done in a variety of ways.

“Just [take care of your] general overall health. Make sure you’re exercising, eat well, and get plenty of rest,” said Lakin.

The DHHS also suggests getting vaccinated for the flu, COVID-19, and RSV.

“They may not help you from getting COVID,” said Lakin, “but at least it will reduce the severity of the disease.”

Flu season in the state

Over the past several weeks COVID-19 cases have been increasing in the state.

While COVID-19 is not considered a seasonal sickness, Lakin said cases of the flu are expected to spike over the next few months.

“People get together, it gets cold, people start mingling more inside. You know, they have Thanksgiving and Christmas. And then that’s kind of when the flu starts to spread,” said Lakin. 

The flu season usually peaks around December through February.

Vaccination updates and information

Flu vaccines are currently available in several healthcare provider offices.

Shots for COVID-19 are also available, however, the updated COVID-19 vaccine will only be available in the coming weeks.

RSV vaccines for adults 60 or older are also available, with an RSV vaccine for pregnant women available in October according to a release by DHHS.

More information about the vaccines can be found here.

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Health and Human Services warning Utahns to be prepared for flu season