I am writing to create awareness of a fantastic community event that Erikson Family Medicine is providing on October 7th from 12 pm to 6 pm in our parking lot at 2330 Coronado St. It is a ‘DRIVE THRU TO FIGHT THE FLU.”
This has been the most bizarre year of my 50 years of living. I recognize that there are still a lot of unknowns with COVID-19 and many, even the medical profession, have varied beliefs in treatments, duration, quarantining, masks, etc. What I do know is that medicine is a mixture of science and art.
Each year the medical and social debate surfaces: Should I, or should I not, get the “flu shot”?
I will give you my two cents. In all the years of my practicing medicine I have never seen a case of measles, mumps, rubella, smallpox, polio, tetanus, hepatitis B, or many other eradicated diseases, because of the advent of immunizations. There is absolutely no immunization or test that will guarantee 100% perfection. There might be some side effects or possible illness. You might have a sore arm, or some mild redness for a day or two.
But here are some facts: The swine flu (H1N1) of 2009 killed more than 1,000,000 people. The 1918 Spanish flu killed more than 50 million people worldwide, with greater than 500 million people infected. 70 to 85% of all flu related deaths occurs to those >65 years old. If the death rate from influenza is that high among our seniors, doing something is better than crossing our fingers, and praying or hoping you will be spared.
The flu shot is now available. This year we will be giving two types:
1) The quadrivalent which is 4 strains covered that is given to anyone age 6 months and older.
2) A high dose quadrivalent which has 4 times higher antigen, which helps to stimulate a better immunologic response for those who are older than 65.
The most active flu season is typically November thru February. I am confident that by receiving a flu shot each year, your risk is lowered significantly for a bad outcome.
I have been involved in medicine for over 26 years and during those years, I have only missed 2 days of work for illness. It was from infulenza fourteen years ago. I could not get out of bed for two days. After two days, I willed myself back to work because of no paid sick time. Since then my family and I get the flu shot every year.
For this reason, I look forward to seeing you at our “DRIVE THRU TO FIGHT THE FLU” at my office parking lot at 2330 Coronado St. from 12 pm to 6 pm on October 7. Fill up your car with your loved ones and show up during those hours. Remain in your vehicle. We will come to you and safely administer the appropriate vaccine to you and your loved ones.
Thank you for all the many years of allowing me to serve you and your families as your family physician.
Brad C Erikson, D.O.