January 16, 2018
Influenza is widespread across the United States this flu season with 49 states, including
NC, reporting a sharp increase in flu related visits to emergency departments and
urgent cares, along with an increase in hospitalizations this past week. The incident
of reported flu or flu related illness has been above average across the country for
the last six weeks, and reporting suggests an increased severity of flu symptoms based
on FluView Activity Data collected by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, GA.
Health Services has been preparing for the return of students for spring semester, and the arrival
of flu on our campus. Students, as well as faculty and staff, are urged to educate
themselves and take precautions to avoid getting the flu and spreading the flu. Informational
posters have been distributed across campus as well as included on digital signage
and social media platforms monitored by the university.
- The first defense against flu is to receive the seasonal flu vaccine. The vaccine
may not prevent an individual from getting sick, but it may help the patient from
avoiding the most severe flu symptoms. Health Services has been able to work with the Jackson Co Health Department and acquire
additional flu vaccines from the state department of public health that are now available
at no cost to the patient. Call 828-227-7640 to request your flu shot.
- Other precautions include frequent hand washing, particularly after touching common
surfaces like door handles and desk tops. Avoid touching your face until you can
wash or sanitize your hands. Also, avoid contact with patients sick with flu like
symptoms. Patients are urged to wear a mask when seeking care in health services, both mask
and hand sanitizer are available at each entrance to Health Services.
- If you become sick, seek care quickly, there are antiviral medications that your medical
provider can prescribe to help you recover more quickly. Health Services also requests that patients come by themselves for their healthcare
visit, reducing the risk of a well person being exposed to viruses.
Regular updates will be made to this site when any new information becomes available.
Information regarding flu activity in NC can be found at http://www.flu.nc.gov/, and information regarding flu activity nationally can be found at flu.gov and the CDC flu website.
Several infectious illnesses result from mosquito and tick bites. The simplest way
to prevent these illnesses is to prevent mosquito and tick bites through the use of
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recently issued travel advisories
to areas infected with Zika virus, including parts of the United States. There are
five important things that you should know about Zika. The most common symptoms of Zika are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis
(red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting for several days to
a week after being bitten by an infected mosquito. People usually don’t get sick enough
to go to the hospital, and they very rarely die.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms and have either traveled to an infected
area or recently had mosquito bites please visit Health Services to discuss your concerns.
Other infections that can result from a mosquito or tick bites include:
Saint Louis Encephalitis
La Crosse Encephalitis
Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
Educate yourself and contact Health Services if you need more information.
Health Services if following the guidance and recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO) and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Division of Public Health.
There is a Level 2 Travel warning issued by the CDC to limit travel to Saudi Arabia,
and the neighboring countries of Iran, Iraq and Syria. For more information regarding
travel restrictions visit http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/alert/coronavirus-saudi-arabia-qatar .
As of June 2015, there is still a Level 1 travel warning to South Korea and China.
For more information regarding travel restrictions to this area visit http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/watch/mers-republic-of-korea
As of March 29, 2016 the World Health Organization issued the following statement:
The 9th meeting of the Emergency Committee convened by the WHO Director-General under
the International Health Regulations (2005) (IHR) regarding the Ebola virus disease
outbreak in West Africa took place on 29 March 2016. In the Committee’s view, the
Ebola situation in West Africa no longer constitutes a Public Health Emergency of
International Concern and the temporary recommendations adopted in response should
now be terminated.
Health Services will continue to follow the guidance and recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), World Health Organtization (WHO) and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Division of Public Health.