Each year about 36,000 die in the United States from the flu. But on Sept. 22 about 100 members of N.C. Central University community got some protection from the deadly virus. Shots were offered to all of NCCU faculty, staff, students, retirees and dependents covered by the N.C. State Health Plan.
To get the flu shots, which were given in the Alfonso Elder Student Union, community members had to bring a photo ID and their health insurance card.
The flu shot clinic was administered by LaRita Brooks, NCCU human resources benefits specialist.
“I would advise students to get the flu shot. You don’t know how bad the flu will affect you,” said Veta McNeill-Best, an administrative support specialist in NCCU budget and financial planning.
“You could cause serious illness to a close friend, the elderly or a family member who doesn’t have a strong immune system.” McNeill-Best, who said she gets a flu shot every year said that she has never had the flu, but she has seen family members suffer miserably from high fevers and chills. “They felt bad all over,” she said. “I was up all night trying to care for them. Now, they get the flu shot.”
The flu, or influenza, is a respiratory illness caused by a virus that changes slightly each year. It is very contagious and is usually spread by the coughing and sneezing of an infected person. Infected adults can unknowingly pass the virus to infants and children. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends flu shots every year for everyone six months or older.