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Flu vaccines recommended

Health department nurse Sherry Farr is reminding people to get their flu shots. ’Swine flu seems to be a rather mild virus, but seasonal flu is coming up,’ Farr said. ‘Everybody needs their vaccines as soon as they’re available. The health department won’t wait until Oct. 1 this year. As soon as they’re in we’ll get them to you.’ Due to an upswing in whooping cough, the department is pushing pertussis boosters, which for adults are part of the tetanus shot. It also includes a diphtheria booster. ’If you haven’t had a tetanus shot in five years or more you need one,’ she said. Studies by the Centers for Disease Control show a resurgence in whooping cough in infants is being caused by adults they come in contact with. Pertussis vaccines adults got as children have worn off and children are not completely protected for the first few months of life. Whooping cough is more serious in children than adults and teens, in whom the symptoms can seem like a long-lasting cold. Reports of pertussis increased 100% between 2000 and 2007, the last year for which data is available. It is believed only a small number of cases are reported due to misdiagnosis as colds or bronchitis.

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