Some things about winter never change.
There will likely be snow.
And people you know (or maybe even you) will get the flu.
With positive cases of the flu as well as a lot of influenza-like illness being reported in Marion County, it’s important to do everything possible to stay healthy.
Earlier this month, officials at the Marion County Health Department said 31 cases of the flu had been reported locally. Of those cases, almost all were influenza type A, and many were H1N1, which is a strain of influenza type A. The county also had received 107 reports of influenza-like illness.
Patients are diagnosed with influenza-like illness when they have a fever of 100 degrees or higher along with a cough or sore throat, but no other symptoms. Symptoms of the flu include fever, cough, chills and headaches, and just feeling bad and general malaise.
And with flu season typically lasting through March, there are still plenty of steps you can take to help ensure you don’t get sick.
Health officials have long touted getting a flu shot as the best defense against the flu. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states, vaccination against the flu can reduce the chances of flu illnesses, doctors’ visits and missed work due to flu as well as prevent flu-related hospitalizations and deaths.
The flu shot is recommended for everyone, but especially for children, people over 65, pregnant women and individuals with chronic diseases. People with egg allergies or who have had allergic reactions related to the flu vaccine in the past should not get the immunization. In addition, the vaccine should not be given to individuals who have had Guillain-Barre syndrome.
And, as the CDC points out, the flu vaccine cannot give you the flu. The most common side effects from a flu shot are soreness where the shot was given, a low fever or achiness. Those who receive the nasal spray flu vaccine might experience congestion, runny nose, sore throat or cough. Health officials remind patients that side effects are usually mild and short-lived.
Of course, protection doesn’t end with the flu shot. It’s also important to remember some basic courtesies: Wash your hands. Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Simple steps like these help prevent getting the flu or making others ill.
And perhaps most important — health officials say if you’re sick, stay home.
The health department, located at 300 Second St. in Fairmont, holds an immunization clinic from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Wednesday. No appointments are accepted, as these services are for walk-ins only. Once people have received the vaccine, it takes up to two weeks to develop complete immunity and protection.
West Virginia is among 40 states in the U.S. reporting widespread flu activity, and health officials say it isn’t too late to get vaccinated.
With two months of the flu season left, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Some things about winter never change.
Prevention must remain focus when dealing with cruel black lung disease
“Preventable, but not curable.”
That’s how Joe Main, assistant secretary of labor for Mine Safety and Health, describes black lung disease.
He could also use the word “deadly.”
According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, black lung has killed more than 76,000 miners since 1968.
If something seems too good to be true, then assume that it is
Scam. noun. A confidence game or other fraudulent scheme, especially for making a quick profit; swindle.
This is a word that Marion Countians have heard a lot about in the past few years. And the problem appears to be one that is getting worse every day.
State must convince parents, schools about benefits of Common Core
It’s always nice to have a little bit of background information before diving into something new.
So we have to agree with West Virginia Board of Education president Gayle Manchin when she says the state should have done a better job of explaining Common Core standards when they were first introduced.
Those standards, part of a national educational initiative that sets learning goals designed to prepare students in kindergarten through 12th grade for college and career, will be fully implemented in every West Virginia school district next month.
Time is now for Tomblin to support King Coal Highway
U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., is asking Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to add the King Coal Highway project to West Virginia’s six-year highway improvement plan. It is a logical request, and one that Tomblin should act promptly on.
United effort to keep NASA in Fairmont is essential project
The high-technology sector is obviously vital to the economy of North Central West Virginia.
That’s why a strong, united effort to keep the NASA Independent Verification and Validation Program in Fairmont is absolutely essential.
COLUMN: Calling all readers: Be heard
I love to talk to readers.
I love to hear concerns they have about stories we’ve written, things they think should be included in the newspaper and things they think shouldn’t be.
Korean War veterans are deserving of a memorial
NEEDED: A total of $10,000 for the Korean War Memorial this year.
And a good man has been placed in charge of the funding. Charlie Reese, former president of the Marion County Chamber of Commerce, is now director of the Marion County Development Office. His task was to make a recommendation as to what steps are necessary to keep the project moving.
Roll up your sleeves, give blood and you can save lives
It takes up to 100 units of blood to save the life of someone who sustains life-threatening injuries in a vehicle accident.
We’re hoping that the number of people who come to Fairmont Senior High School on Friday for and American Red Cross blood drive will exceed that amount.
Vehicles and motorcycles must share the road safely
The days are long. The weather is superb. There’s plenty of leisure time in these lazy days of summer.
It’s the perfect time to take a long motorcycle ride.
It’s also the perfect opportunity for us to take the time to remind not only riders but drivers of the need to share the road. And we feel compelled to mention it because just within the month of July, there have been two motorcycle-versus-car accidents within the City of Fairmont alone — one with severe injuries sustained by the motorcyclist and the other with less serious injury.
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- Prevention must remain focus when dealing with cruel black lung disease