PSA: About the FLU season and how NOT to spread the flu around

I was sent a story from the Miami Herald about an ER nurse who is FED UP.

How NOT to spread the flu around.

There is a story and a VIDEO

Please, everyone, pay attention and use simple, thoughtful steps.

And if you have the flu, and you are not dying, stay away from your priests for a while? Please?

Of course you can


But don’t be stupid about the flu. Please?

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. adriennep says:

    I don’t think she was too sarcastic at all. Why do not ERs have mandatory use of sanitizers, or refuse access to visiting sports teams?! Thank your ERs, and also ask them to protect others more by getting as tough as this nurse.

    On a trip to Italy in 2010 with the mighty Steve Ray, I got terrible cold/flu congestion on the transatlantic plane and was introduced to Oscillococcinum by Boiron. It’s now widely available and does miracles on flu or cold. Just stops it. Also tea with raw honey and real lemon does wonders, along with steaming your face (hot water in a pot with towel over your head). A Snot Terminator!

  2. Mike says:

    If either Father or I seems to be suffering from flu, I abstain from Holy Communion. If it’s I doing the suffering, I try to lurk in an isolated pew. And after this PSA, I might consider staying home for the good of all. Not an ideal state of affairs in any case, but I can always make a Spiritual Communion.

  3. APX says:

    Now if only employers could be forced to not make workers come to work with the flu. Who doesn’t like a little flu to go with their Americano?

    I had to make a trip to the ER with pneumonia because my asthma was making things worse and I needed a super large dose of ventolin and other emergency asthma drugs. I spent four hours waiting surrounded by people with the flu (why people go to the ER with just the flu is beyond me) praying I didn’t get the flu on top of pneumonia.

  4. ChesterFrank says:

    This isn’t a joke: if you are sick, especially with the flu, stay home. If you are sick, act sick. Stay in bed, rest up, drink your fluids; and you will recover quicker. Those whom you usually congregate with will be most appreciative. These illnesses can be deadly to some. Thank you

  5. JesusFreak84 says:

    If you receive the Eucharist in the Eastern Rites, don’t close your mouth on the spoon… I’ve legitimately caught colds that way =-\

  6. Mary Jane says:

    If you’re really sick, it is charitable to stay home and recover. I often struggle with knowing, well, how sick am I? Could I make it to mass? That’s not the right question to ask, I think…perhaps I could make it through mass but is it really charitable to those around me? Those are the questions we ask when we are deciding who needs to stay home.

    It’s hard for larger families as well, when someone gets sick – a family of four might get all work through a round of illness in a week or two…for a family of 8, it could take two (or three) times that long (more people in the house for the illness to infect).

  7. Imrahil says:

    Now if only employers could be forced to not make workers come to work with the flu.

    In most countries of the word, they can; but then I have a suspicion that in the United States this would be called “socialism”.

  8. Eonwe says:

    The nurse comes on a bit hard, but it is understandable. Nurses (particularly ER nurses) have a very difficult job and they get frustrated when people don’t use sense. Granted, healthcare professionals sometimes forget the training they have and that most people have little medical knowledge.

    As far as the prevention of the flu is concerned wash your hands frequently, cover your mouth with your sleeve (transmits by respiratory droplets), and stay away from places/people with the flu if possible. Get the flu vaccine too, unfortunately it has little coverage this year but there have been studies in the past that indicate that it can lessens the side effects and duration even if its coverage is low. If you are older or immuno-compromised (have various chronic diseases, on steroids, various RA medications, etc…) then you should talk to your doctor about getting the pneumonia vaccines as pneumonia can occur secondarily to the flu.

    Symptoms: fever (100-104 F), chills, headache, sore throat, dry cough, muscle stiffness, weakness, increased nasal drainage, etc… Adults tend to have upper respiratory symptoms and children can have abdominal issues (diarrhea/vomiting) though they also have upper respiratory symptoms.

    Treatment: Fluids and rest are the best thing. Avoiding public places if possible. It is reasonable to call your doctor or go into an urgent care if concerned (avoid the ER unless your symptoms are really bad and/or not resolving). If you can get in within 48 hrs of symptoms they might give your Tamiflu which can reduce symptoms and duration (and morbidity according to some studies). If you or your children cannot hold water down after more than a day, it might be a good idea to go into the ER as you might be dehydrated. The older you are and the more medical illness you have the more aggressive you should be about seeing a doctor to get Tamiflu and be evaluated for potential pneumonia.

    Duration: Can start improving from 2-5 days and most symptoms should be resolved around a week. A cough can remain for a couple weeks.

    Complications: Pneuomonia is the main one. If you have the flu start to get better and then start getting worse again you should be concerned for a secondary infection. Symptoms might be fever, chills, shortness of breath, productive cough (yellow or rust colored sputum), chest pain with cough/breathing, weakness, mental status change, etc…

    A bit long, but I’m in the medical field so I got a little carried away haha.

    Stay safe!

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