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Practice Transformation Companion Newsletter: December 2023

Dec 6, 2023 | News



December 2023

Two Health Observances with One Goal

December 2023 Blog

We have two health observances for the week of December 4-8. Not only is it National Handwashing Awareness Week, but it is also National Influenza Vaccination Week. Wash your hands and roll up your sleeves!


Handwashing can prevent 1 in 3 diarrhea-related illnessesand 1 in 5 respiratory infections such as the cold or the flu. The CDC recommends that we teach our children the 5 steps of handwashing early. These are wet, lather, scrub, rinse and dry! Easy peasy. Parents play an important rolein teaching children to wash their hands from the time they are young to makeit a healthy habit.


Learning the 4 Principles of Hand Awareness that are endorsed by the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Family Physicians is also a good idea:


  • Wash your hands when they are dirty, before eating, and after using the bathroom. Clean the back of the hands and between the fingers. Dry off hands with a clean cloth or paper towel or hand dryer.
  • Do not cough into your hands
  • Do not sneeze into your hands
  • Do not put your fingers in your eyes, nose ormouth

To reduce the risk of seasonal flu, it is important to get vaccinated every year. A flu shot can reduce the severity of the symptoms if you end up getting the flu and can speed up your recovery time. An annual shot is needed as the flu virus changes and alters itself every year. That is why the flu can be so widespread and sometimes hard to avoid. That is also why there is a new vaccine every year.

Some of the most common flu symptoms are:

  • Fever or feeling feverish or chills
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuff nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Vomiting and diarrhea (more common in children)


Protect yourself and others from the flu by:

  • Avoiding close contact with people who are ill. Keep your distance from others when you are sick, too. It works both ways.
  • Stay home from work or school when you are sick. This helps prevent the spread of illness to other people.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Flu viruses are spread by droplets made when people with the flu talk, sneeze or cough.
  • Wash your hands often. This will help protect you from germs. Use an alcohol-based liquid if soap and water aren’t available like we did (and some of us still do) during COVID.
  • When a person touches something contaminated with germs, those germs can easily be spread if we touch our mouth, nose or eyes
  • Disinfect frequently touched surfaces at work o rhome when someone is ill


Remember that flu and COVID-19 are both contagiou srespiratory illnesses but caused by different viruses. COVID-19 spreads more easily than the flu and has some of the same signs and symptoms. With that information in mind, go ahead and get the updated COVID-19 shot for protection over thisfall and winter, too. You’re already at the pharmacy. Why not? Just do it. Preventionis always the gold standard.

PTI send best wishes for a happy and healthy holiday season!

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