The Student Health Center will not be giving any more flu shots this season. Please check with your health care provider, or the Health Department.
Flu hits SC hard: $10 flu shots at Thomson Student Health Center
Thomson Student Health Center’s General Medicine Center and Laboratory have documented a significant increase in flu-like illness and positive flu tests throughout this year’s flu season, which began in Sept. 2012.
The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued statements in early Jan. 2013 concerning the severity and spread of flu within our state and the entire southeast, noting:
- SC saw 3,206 positive flu tests the last week in December—200 times more than this time last year.
- 400,000 people in SC are estimated to get flu this season.
- SC is seeing 6 times more flu-like illness now compared to this time last year.
- 15 South Carolinians have died since Sept. 30, 2012 from flu complications. 862 have been hospitalized.
Flu Vaccine Availability
Students, faculty and staff can get the flu vaccine at the Thomson Student Health Center, located behind the Russell House, from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday – Friday for $10.
We are offering the flu shot only, which contains the inactivated virus.
No appointments are required; walk-ins are accepted.
Carolina Card, cash, check, Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover are accepted for payment.
Students must present a Carolina Card to receive the vaccine. Faculty and staff must have a valid employee USC identification card.
For more information about the flu vaccine, call 803-777-9511.
Why it’s important to prevent the flu
Influenza (the flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at high risk for serious flu complications. Flu seasons are unpredictable and can be severe. Over a period of 30 years, between 1976 and 2006, estimates of flu-associated deaths in the United States range from a low of about 3,000 to a high of about 49,000 people. Complications of flu
Complications of flu can include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration, and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes.
The best way to prevent the flu is by getting vaccinated each year.
This year’s flu vaccine
The 2012-2013 flu vaccine will protect against the three influenza viruses that research indicates will be most common during the season. This includes an influenza A (H1N1) virus, an influenza A (H3N2) virus, and an influenza B virus.
It takes about two weeks after vaccination for your body to develop an immune response. Get vaccinated now so that you will be protected when flu season begins. In the United States, influenza season usually begins in October and can last until May.
How to prevent the flu
- Get an annual flu vaccine. It’s your single best defense against the flu virus.
- Keep your hands clean. Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs. Use hand wipes and sanitizers.
- Cover your mouth and nose. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick.
- If you get the flu, if possible, stay home from work, school, and errands. You will help prevent others from catching your illness.
- Practice other good health habits. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.
- A temperature higher than 100F
- Muscle aches and pains
- Sore throat
- Sudden onset of dizziness
If you have the symptoms described above
- Students should make an appointment with the Student Health Services General Medicine Center by visiting MyHealthSpace at (803) 777-3175
- Self-isolate (except to get medical care) for at least 24 hours after fever subsides without use of fever-reducing medicine
When to seek emergency medical care
- You have difficulty breathing or chest pain
- You have a purple or blue discoloration of your lips
- You have vomiting and unable to keep liquids down
- You have signs of dehydration such as dizziness when standing or absence of urination
- You have a seizures or uncontrolled convulsions
- You are less responsive than normal or have difficulty thinking
If you fall within one of the following categories and have been exposed to anyone with the flu or have flu-like symptoms, promptly call your physician
- Pregnant women
- People younger than 19 who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy
- People who are morbidly obese
- People with chronic pulmonary (asthma), cardiovascular (except high blood pressure), renal, hepatic, hematological (sickle cell disease), neurologic, neuromuscular or metabolic disorders (including diabetes), and immunosuppression, including that caused by medications or HIV
- Children younger than 5
- Adults older than 65
- Residents of chronic care facilities or nursing homes
Are you caring for a loved one? Follow these tips to protect yourself and others in your home.
- Keep everyone's personal items separate. Avoid sharing computers, clothes, towels, sheets, and eating utensils.
- Disinfect surfaces that are commonly touched around the home.
- It's okay to wash everyone's dishes and clothes together. Use detergent and very hot water. Wash your hands after handling dirty laundry.