The Times West Virginian


January 12, 2014

What steps do you take during flu season?

So you’re sick. What do you have? A virus? A cold? The flu?

Do you have a 100-degree or higher fever? A cough and/or sore throat? A runny or stuffy nose? Do you have a headache and/or body aches? Chills? Fatigue? Stomach issues?

If you answered yes to these, you may indeed have the flu. It is, after all, going around the county. The Marion County Health Department has seen positive cases of the flu. In the first week of January, the county had 31 diagnosed cases of the flu. Of those cases, almost all were influenza type A, and many were H1N1, which is a strain of influenza type A. Marion County also had 107 reports of influenza-like illness.

Granted, those were just people who sought medical attention and were tested for the flu. Many, many people may have suffered through the “storm” at home using over-the-counter remedies, chicken soup and lots of tissues.

Haven’t been exposed? There certainly still risk, as the flu season lasts from October through March. And there’s also hope. It is not too late to get the flu vaccine. The flu shot is recommended for most people, but especially for children, people over 65, pregnant women and those with chronic diseases.

And there are preventative things you can do, like practice good hand-washing techniques and regularly cleaning surfaces that are frequently touched. And if you’re sick, the best thing you can do is stay home or risk causing someone else the misery you’ve gone through.

We were curious about how our readers prepared themselves for the flu season. Last week, we asked our readers to respond to the following question on our online poll, which can be found at It’s the flu season. How do you protect yourself and your family from the nasty germs?

And here’s what you had to say:

• I ought to buy stock in bleach and hand sanitizer. I am constantly vigilant about germs — 4.11 percent.

• I avoid those who are possibly ill and practice good hand washing and sanitizing — 32.88 percent.

• I get a flu shot and go about my life — 63.01 percent.

Regardless of how you prepare, try to stay healthy.

This week, let’s talk about stress. Some jobs out there are pretty stressful, and a recent report ranked them. Which professions do you think are the most stressful?

Log on. Vote. Email me or respond online.

Misty Poe

Managing Editor


Text Only
  • Unsung heroes handling calls in emergencies are appreciated

    Thankfully, we live in a community where help is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, just by dialing three numbers — 9-1-1.
    During this week, which is recognized as National Public Safety Tele-Communicator’s Week nationwide, we need to remember that on the other end of that line are the men and women here in this county who are always there in case of accident, crimes, medical emergencies and any other catastrophic event.

    April 18, 2014

  • Message to ‘buckle up and park the phone’ is saving lives

    A figure that we haven’t seen that much in recent years is the highway death toll for a given period.
    Is the death toll up, down or just about the same as it was?
    The West Virginia Southern Regional Highway Safety Program has announced there were 325 highway fatalities in 2013, the second-lowest number on record.

    April 17, 2014

  • State native Burwell can ‘deliver results’ as Health and Human Services secretary

    Sylvia Mathews Burwell might not be a name with which most people are immediately familiar.
    For the past year, she has run the budget office under President Barack Obama.
    Prior to that, she served as president of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global Development Program and later the Wal-Mart Foundation.

    April 16, 2014

  • Marion scores well in recent health report but could do better

    When it comes to area-wide studies, especially on health, there’s usually good news and bad news.
    So was the recent report on the health of America’s counties released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation recently. The nationwide county study evaluated health outcomes and health factors, and ranked counties accordingly.

    April 13, 2014

  • COLUMN: ‘Instant’ news not always reliable

    That little word has a pretty big meaning. With origins that date back to the 15th century, it means urgent, current, immediate.
    But think about how that word has developed over the past few decades.
    Instant pudding. Instead of slaving over a hot stove for a few minutes, you can now pour cold milk and with a bit of stirring, instant pudding!

    April 13, 2014

  • Decision to be an organ donor can save lives

    Chelsea Clair watched as her father died waiting for a bone marrow transplant.
    So when she met Kyle Froelich at a car show in 2009 and heard about his struggles to find a kidney that would match his unique needs, she never hesitated to offer hers to the man she just met.

    April 11, 2014

  • Volunteers continue to have priceless impact on community

    Chances are, you know someone who volunteers. Perhaps you’re a volunteer yourself.
    Marion County is full of volunteers.
    They read to our youth.
    They assist nonprofit agencies.
    They serve on boards and committees.
    And in 2013, they spent a day picking up nearly 10 tons of garbage that had been tossed out on public property around Marion County.

    April 10, 2014

  • Proposed school calendar lives up to letter and spirit of law

    West Virginia state law requires that students be in a classroom for 180 days.

    April 9, 2014

  • Strong Fairmont General Hospital badly needed to serve our region

    Mere minutes often matter when it comes to emergency health care.
    That’s why we need a strong Fairmont General Hospital.
    When patients need the services of health-care professionals, having family and friends close at hand is often essential, and their presence may even lead to a better outcome.

    April 6, 2014

  • COLUMN: Fairmont General Hospital vital part of community

    There’s nothing better than holding a newborn baby. It gives you a little feeling that not only is everything right in the world, but this perfect little human represents hope of a future where things will be better than they are today.
    I had that blessed opportunity to hold that hopeful future in my arms last week when I visited my dear friend Jen and her newborn son Tristan at Fairmont General Hospital.

    April 6, 2014

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