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Worried about the Flu?

Worried about the Flu?

Local Physician Offers Best Ways to Protect Your Family

Influenza season is almost here. You, along with many others, may have questions and concerns about what to do about the flu, especially given concerns about the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic.

Join Dr. Kevin Porciuncula, a family medicine physician with Washington Township Medical Foundation, at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 6, for his online Health & Wellness Seminar, “It’s Flu Season — Just Say No.” During the seminar, Dr. Porciuncula will discuss steps you can take to keep you and your family from getting sick this flu season.

This event can be watched live on Facebook and YouTube. To view on Facebook, sign into your account and then go to Watching on YouTube does not require an account. Simply go to

“Get your flu shot as soon as you can,” Dr. Porciuncula urges. Flu shots will become available in September and the most important thing anyone can do to prevent getting the flu this winter is to get a flu shot. “And be sure to have the shot by the end of October.”

Concerned about the flu shot not mixing well with your COVID vaccine? The two are completely different viruses and the vaccines do not interact, Dr. Porciuncula notes. “It’s perfectly safe to have both shots; in fact, being immunized for both will help keep you and your family well this winter.”

Dr. Porciuncula also will discuss other “common sense” steps to take to prevent becoming ill with the flu this winter. These include good hand hygiene practices, making sure to avoid others who are sick, and if you do get sick—not going back to work or school for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone or after symptoms have improved (at least four to five days after flu symptoms began).

If you feel sick and think you may have the flu, call your doctor and see if you should have a prescription for Tamiflu. Tamiflu is an antiviral drug that attacks the flu virus and helps reduce the symptoms of the flu.

Dr. Porciuncula will also explain how to know the aches and fever you are experiencing are from the flu, rather than COVID. “You can have the flu and COVID infection at the same time as they are completely different viruses. Flu symptoms may emerge one to four days after infection while COVID symptoms may take two to 14 days.”

Dr. Porciuncula will also address concerns about whether the flu shot can give you the flu. “The flu shot takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop and provide protection against the virus. If someone gets the flu after having the shot, it’s usually because they have been exposed to the flu before the shot has taken effect. The flu shot does not give you the flu,” he emphasizes.

If you miss the live Oct. 6 seminar, visit the Washington Hospital YouTube page. Here you can find this and hundreds of other Washington Hospital productions,

To watch “It’s Flu Season — Just Say No" seminar on our YouTube InHealth channel, click here.