INFLUENZA (“The Flu”)
Influenza, or the flu, is a common respiratory illness that impacts millions of patients every year. Flu cases usually range from mild to moderate symptom severity with rare cases of hospitalizations.
The only way to know for certain if your symptoms are related to a cold, allergies, or the flu, is to be tested for flu. Centennial Medical Group and FirstCall Medical Center offers flu testing. This is a simple nasal swab performed right in our office or at one of our mobile Community Access Sites. We are able to provide you with fast and accurate results so our healthcare providers can formulate a treatment plan to get you on the road to recovery as quickly as possible.
Flu symptoms are often similar to those of many other illnesses. At Centennial Medical/FirstCall, we are also able to simultaneously rule out Strep, RSV, and COVID-19 infection.
As we enter flu season here in Maryland, it is important to remember there are three main actions you can take to help prevent severe illness due to influenza. These actions include:
Flu Vaccine is widely available and recommended for ages 6 months+, especially for people considered high risk for developing complications from the flu. High risk would include those 65 and older, anyone with chronic health conditions such as asthma, diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and anyone with a weakened immune system.
In addition to vaccination, there are things you can do to help prevent the spread of flu including hand washing, distancing yourself from anyone who is sick, avoiding touching your eyes/nose/mouth/face
We now have antiviral drugs effective in treating the flu which can be recommended and prescribed by your health care provider along with a treatment plan for symptom relief.
Recently, the CDC issued guidance on co-administration of vaccinations for Flu and COVID-19 and stated that you can receive both a COVID-19 vaccination (or booster, if eligible) AND the influenza vaccination at the same time which is available at our urgent care locations.