Saba healthcare staff first to receive annual flu shot

Several healthcare workers of Saba Health Care Foundation (SHCF) and Benevolent Foundation Saba (BFS) received the annual flu shot for 2015 this week, writes The Daily Herald. More employees of both organizations will receive the flu shot in the next couple of days.

Saba healthcare workers getting their flu shots.
Saba healthcare workers getting their flu shots.

Every year in October and November, SHCF offers the flu shot to the public, as it reduces the risk of catching flu. Individuals, who had the shot, can still get the flu after the shot, however, it is less likely and the symptoms might be milder. About one in ten people catch flu in the winter season. In most cases, it is unpleasant, but clears up spontaneously. However, some people can become very ill; these people are in the so-called flu-risk group.

People, who fall in the flu-risk group, are persons aged 60 or over, diabetics, patients with chronic heart-, kidney- or lung disease, and persons with reduced immunity due to a disease or medication.

Another group of people, who are recommended to have the annual flu shot, are persons who work in a healthcare profession, and persons, who are a caretaker of a person who falls in the risk group. This is to take away the risk of spreading the flu amongst those more vulnerable.

Staff of the Home Health department of SHCF daily tends to more than 60 patients in their own homes. Almost all of these patients fall in the flu-risk group. To protect the patients, SHCF decided to especially provide the flu shot to this group in the organisation. Others to whom the flu shot will be made available are the SHCF nurses and physicians, who work with the ward patients at A.M. Edwards Medical Center, and the BFS nurses, who work with the elderly in Honorary Henry Carlyle Every Home for the Aged.

Those who are in the risk group, or are caretakers of someone in the risk group, and are insured via Health Insurance Office for Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba ZVK, can contact the clinic at A.M. Edwards Medical Center to receive a free flu shot.

Flu shots are also available for a fee for those who are not in the risk group, or not insured via ZVK. To make an appointment for a flu shot, one can contact SHCF clinic nurses at A.M. Edwards Medical Center via tel. 416-3288, option 3.

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