Flu fight starts early at McKinley

By Daily Illini Staff Report

With flu season right around the corner, the University has started to prepare for the virus by encouraging students to get vaccinations as soon as possible. McKinley Health Center will offer quadrivalent vaccinations for students, with antibodies to resist H1N1, H3N2 and two additional B viruses.

McKinley Health Center offer flu clinics at their Lincoln Avenue location as well from their mobile clinic, which is traveling around campus offering the vaccine.

On a large campus where students sit in close quarters in lecture halls, even healthy students are susceptible to the flu, McKinley Health Center Medical Director Maureen Malee said.

“To be honest, you can’t really predict or prevent getting the flu,” Malee said.

There are three different types of flu: A, B and C, and it is hard to tell which virus will cause the most problems over the season.

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The people most susceptible to the disease are students or elderly with chronic diseases such as diabetes, or lung problems like asthma. These two groups in particular should get the vaccination as soon as possible, for their own health and to prevent spreading the disease, Malee said.

Malee said the important thing for students to remember is, “the sooner the better”. The antibodies can take a couple of weeks to mount a response against the virus, and the flu season can start as early as October.

The later one waits to get the vaccine, the longer your body will be susceptible to the disease. It’s impossible to tell who will contract the disease, and if you do, there isn’t much to do to get better. If students contract the flu, the only way to heal is to wait it out.