Flu season is here again and I am preparing for drive thru clinics on September 16, 2020 and October 7, 2020 at Wing School on Water Street (Rte. 130). The hours are 9A-1P by appointment only. You will need to fill out the insurance forms we use each year. There are several ways to do this. 1) You can fill out the form online and print it and bring it to the flu clinic. The form is available on the Town website, Public Health Nursing, flu clinic section. 2) You can also pick up a form at Town Hall, Town Hall Annex, or the Council on Aging, fill it out and bring it to the drive-thru. 3) You can call Public Health Nursing and the Administrative Assistant will fill it out and give it to you at the Registration stop and the drive-thru or 4) You can fill it out at the drive thru clinic. Please, no pets in the car and wear short sleeve clothing. There will be people and signs to direct you to the clinic site.
All of the vaccines this year at the clinic will be high dose.
If you feel sick, isolate yourself in your room if possible until you are well. It would be ideal to have your own bedroom and bathroom and not share towels, dishes, glasses, or utensils with others. Do Not go to the supermarket or pharmacy. If you are tested, stay in your home until you receive your results and then follow Sandwich Public Health Nursing and the Board of Health’s information on isolation and quarantine. Remember, the virus can remain on surfaces for a couple of days so continue to clean frequently with FDA approved cleaners such as Clorox and Lysol.
Call Public Health Nursing with any questions. (508) 833-8020. We can connect you with many resources in town.
There are some basic interventions we can all do to mitigate our chances of contracting the Corona virus.
Wash your hands frequently, do not touch your face until you wash your hands (Most people touch their faces 23 times a minute!)
Sneeze or cough into your elbow or tissue. Discard the tissue into a receptacle.
Stay Home If You Are Sick
You can prepare your home as well. Stock up on food supplies important to you such as frozen fruit, frozen vegetables, canned items, juices, tea, coffee, treats, pasta, rice, cereal, soup etc. Remember, you may not be able to go to the supermarket for several weeks! Also, do you have enough personal items, toothpaste, and shampoo?
Be sure you have adequate medications in your house/apartment so you do not have to go out if we find ourselves dealing with this virus. (4 weeks supply would be ideal). Also, if you use Tylenol, Ibuprofen, saline drops, etc, check your supply.
Check your basic items such as toilet paper, tissues, cleaning supplies (such as Lysol or Clorox wipes or spray).
The 2019-nCoV is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans. It is a betacoronavirus with some similarities to the SARS virus of 2003. The main symptoms are fever, cough, and shortness of breathe, although there have been cases with diarrhea and nausea, headache, and myalgias. Human to human spread has now been documented. Since this is a virus, antibiotics are not usually helpful and supportive care such as respiratory management and fluids, as well as isolation or quarantine, are being used. Two antiviral medications (Remdesiver and lopinavir-ritonavir) are drugs currently being used as investigational antiviral therapy.
The outbreak began in Wuhan China in November or December and the first reported case was in December. Although the Chinese government acted quickly to identify the virus and make it’s genetic sequencing available to other countries, many Chinese from Wuhan had already left the country for the Lunar New Year celebration with family. Currently, there are 12 cases in the U.S. as well as cases in Asia and Europe.
The CDC has a protocol for monitoring patients with fever and respiratory symptoms who have traveled to Wuhan or been contacts of patients in any country who have been diagnosed with 2019 nCoV.
Currently, the CDC is advising people to: wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds before touching your eyes, nose, and mouth; cough into your arm; stay home if you are ill. (The same advice applies to protecting yourself from the flu).
Flu clinics for Sandwich residents 19 years and older are now scheduled for:
Friday, October 11, 2019 9AM-12Noon and 1PM-4PM
Wednesday, October 16, 2019 9AM-12Noon and 1PM-4PM
Where: Human Services Building 270 Quaker Meetinghouse Road, East Sandwich
Most insurances are accepted (exceptions are United and Aetna). Please bring all insurance cards including Medicare, Mass Health, and private insurances.
Self pay charge: High dose Trivalent $45
Regular Quadrivalent $15
Check or exact cash
Appointments are necessary. Please call (508) 833-8020 to schedule an appointment. Those adults who will be having surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation prior to the clinics should call the office to make an earlier appointment if needed.
I will be offering both high dose (trivalent) for those 65 and older and regular (quadrivalent) flu shots this year to the residents of Sandwich. As soon as I have information from the drug company about vaccine shipping dates, I will post the clinic dates and times. I expect the clinics to be in early October, a good month for us as our flu season on the Cape usually begins in January. As usual, those folks who are having chemotherapy, surgery, or other major procedures can call me to schedule specific dates for their shot.
You have probably heard that positive mosquito samples for West Nile Virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis have been found in South Shore communities and on the Cape. In fact, a man from Plymouth County is currently hospitalized with Eastern Equine Encephalitis. Both diseases can present with symptoms of fever, headache, stiff neck, and flu like symptoms and, in severe cases, can quickly progress to encephalitis (inflammation of the brain). You should take precautions to protect yourself from mosquito bites:
1) Plan to decrease unnecessary outdoor activities from dusk to dawn especially in critical areas.
2) Apply insect repellent when outdoors. Use an EPA registered ingredient (Deet, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR3535 on your skin, permethrin on your clothes). Read the labels carefully for age limits and how to apply.
3) Wear long sleeved shirts, pants and socks while outdoors.
4) Repair screens to keep mosquitoes out of house.
5) Drain standing water around your house.