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Home News Department of Health and Community Leaders Urge Residents to Vaccinate Against Flu
David Morgan
575-528-5197 Office
575-649-0754 Mobile

Department of Health and Community Leaders Urge Residents to Vaccinate Against Flu

October 21, 2019 - Immunization - Vaccination

Department Cabinet Secretaries getting their flu shots in Albuquerque

New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) Cabinet Secretary Kathy Kunkel and Deputy Secretary Dr. Abinash Achrekar will be available to speak to media about the importance of getting annual flu vaccinations as well as getting vaccinated themselves at the Northwest Valley Public Health Office, 7704 2nd St. NW in Albuquerque on Tuesday, October 22nd at 8:30 a.m. All media is invited. Please arrive by 8:25 am.

Last flu season, more than two hundred New Mexicans died of flu and flu-related pneumonia during 2018-2019 season.

“Flu can be fatal if left untreated or if a person – at any age – has a weakened immune system,” said NMDOH Secretary Kunkel. “Getting your flu vaccination every year is the single best way to protect you, your family, and our state’s most vulnerable residents, from infants to the elderly.”

The Department of Health recommends that everyone six months of age and older get flu vaccine each flu season. The following groups of people are strongly recommended to be vaccinated because they are at high risk of having serious flu-related complications, or because they live with or care for people at high risk for developing flu-related complications:

  • Children younger than 5, but especially children younger than 2 years old. Children aged 6 months through 8 years who have never been vaccinated against influenza, or have an unknown vaccination history, should receive two doses of influenza vaccine, administered at least four weeks apart
  • Pregnant women (all trimesters), and up to two weeks post-partum
  • People ages 50 years and older
  • People of any age with medical conditions like asthma, diabetes, lung or heart disease, and those who are immunocompromised
  • People who live in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities
  • People who live with or care for those at high risk for complications from flu, including healthcare personnel and caregivers of babies younger than six months
  • American Indians and Alaskan Natives
  • People who are morbidly obese

People in these groups should also consider seeing their healthcare provider as early as possible to be evaluated for antiviral medication if they develop flu symptoms because the sooner that these medications are begun, the better the chance of preventing serious complications. People who have the flu may have some or all of the following symptoms:

  • Fever or feeling feverish/chills
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue (tiredness)
  • Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.

Remember that to avoid catching the flu or passing it on to others, everyone should wash their hands frequently, cover their mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing, and stay home when ill.

Please join your wellness leaders and help protect against the flu this season.  NMDOH offers vaccinations for people without insurance or who are otherwise not able to get vaccinated. Those with Medicaid or other insurance who go to their local Public Health Offices are asked to bring their insurance card or contact their healthcare provider or pharmacist about getting a flu vaccine.  

To find a flu vaccination event near you, and other flu-related information see the Department of Health Influenza Vaccinations webpage and the (CDC) Frequently Asked Flu Questions page.

NMDOH is excited to work with our community partners to promote the importance of getting a flu vaccine.

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Media Contact

We would be happy to provide additional information about this press release. Simply contact David Morgan at 575-528-5197 (Office) or 575-649-0754 (Mobile) with your questions.


Versión en Español

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Departamento de Salud y Líderes Comunitarios Exhortan a los Residentes a Vacunarse contra la Influenza