U of L continues pop-up vaccination clinics Monday, Nov 29 2021 

By Madelin Shelton — 

BRIEF: The university announced Nov. 29 that it will continue to provide the COVID-19 vaccine, the COVID-19 booster and flu vaccine at both the Belknap and Health Sciences Center (HSC) campuses.

Upcoming vaccine clinics will occur Tuesday, Nov. 30, Wednesday, Dec. 2, and Friday, Dec. 3 at the Swain Student Activities Center (SAC) from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The pop-up site can be located across from the mail/print shop.

On Wednesday, Dec. 8, Thursday Dec. 9 and Friday, Dec. 10, pop-up vaccination clinics will be located in the Conference Center/Physicians Lounge of the U of L Healthcare Outpatient Center on the HSC Campus. Vaccines will be provided on these dates from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

U of L strongly recommends making an appointment beforehand. The link to schedule one can be found here.

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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U of L sets dates for pop-up vaccine and booster clinics Tuesday, Nov 9 2021 

By Eli Hughes–

The University of Louisville announced on Nov. 9 that they would host another round of pop-up clinics for COVID vaccines/boosters and flu vaccines. The clinics will run from Nov. 10 through Nov. 12 on the Health Sciences Campus and from Nov. 17 to Nov. 19 on the Belknap Campus.

“U of L Campus Health Services will be offering Covid boosters, Covid vaccinations and flu vaccinations this week at the Health Sciences Center and next week on the Belknap Campus to faculty, staff and students,” the email said.  “You can get both your Covid vaccine/booster and your flu vaccine at the same time if desired.”

The HSC clinics will be in the U of L Healthcare Outpatient Center in the Conference Center/Physicians Lounge across from suite 110 from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. The Belknap clinics will be at the SAC across from the mail/print shop from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Those interested in being vaccinated are encouraged to register beforehand to save time, but walk-ins will be accepted. Campus Health Services attached the following instructions for scheduling an appointment ahead of time:

“1. If you want to receive a flu vaccine and a COVID vaccine you will need to make two appointments.

2. Go to https://louisvilleportal.pointnclick.com

3. Click the “Student, Staff and Faculty” button at the top of the page. 4. Microsoft login screen will open. Sign using your ULINK ID@louisville.edu and associated password

5. “Stay Signed In” screen will appear and click No.

6. Confirm your identity by entering your date of birth and click proceed.

7. You should now be on the main page of the Campus Health Patient Portal.

8. To schedule an appointment, click on View, Check-in or Book an Appointment.”

More information about the COVID-19 vaccine, the flu vaccine and the COVID-19 booster can be found on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Website.

Graphic by Eli Hughes//The Louisville Cardinal

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VERIFY: October is the best time to get a flu shot. Here’s why Monday, Sep 13 2021 

Our experts say while October is ideal, it's never too late to get the flu shot, even if you've already had the flu.

        

GALLERY: Flu shot drive finishes two week run Monday, Nov 16 2020 

U of L Health staff finished a two week run of flu shots last Friday.

Across the street from the Reynolds Lofts, university staff and students could get free flu shots every day from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. On average, over the 2 week period, over 20 daily vaccinations were carried out on participating students and staff. From the university’s press release: “All university members coming to campus are required to get a flu shot as part of the university’s response to the pandemic.”

According to staff, having a drive thru option was necessary to ensure the health and safety of staff and students and to reduce the risk of potential COVID-19 transmission.

Photos By Anthony Riley//The Louisville Cardinal

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University requires flu shot for those coming to campus Tuesday, Oct 27 2020 

By Madelin Shelton — 

The University of Louisville is now requiring all students, faculty and staff who come to campus to get a flu vaccination. The vaccinations will be provided free to members of the U of L community at various campus locations.

U of L will administer the free flu shots Monday through Friday from now until Nov. 6 at the Health Sciences Center and Belknap Campus.

The decision comes as health experts across the country stress the importance of receiving a flu vaccine this year to help alleviate the health care systems, which are predicted to be overburdened by COVID-19 patients in the coming fall and winter months.

Vaccination locations at the Belknap Campus include a drive-through option at the parking lot across from Reynolds Lofts and the Student Activities Center (SAC) on the first-floor hallway near the Canon print shop. The Belknap drive-through location will begin vaccinations on Oct. 28, while the SAC’s location is open now. Both locations will operate from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

The HSC locations include the U of L Healthcare Outpatient Center and the U of L Health drive-through. The outpatient center is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 3: 00 p.m. The drive-through is open 8:30-11: 30 a.m. and 1-3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. It is also open 8:30-11:30 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.

All locations will be closed Nov. 3 for Election Day. After Nov. 6, flu shots will still be available at Campus Health Services at both the HSC and the Belknap campus.

University administration has asked for those receiving a flu shot to fill out the flu shot consent form prior to their visit to help decrease wait times at vaccination sites. The form is located under the Spotlight section on Campus Health Service’s website.

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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Two people are being monitored for the coronavirus Friday, Jan 31 2020 

By Maggie Vancampen —

A second email sent to students and faculty said two non-students have traveled back from China and are being monitored off-campus as of Jan. 31. Travel has now been suspended to China and any other countries that have been identified with the virus.

Executive Vice President and Vice Provost Beth Boehm said, “The university has informed the Louisville Health Department about both of these individuals and will continue to follow Health Department and CDC recommendations in handling any cases of individuals arriving from countries in which the virus has been confirmed.”

According to a previous email, since the coronavirus (2019-nCoV) surfaced in Wuhan, China, the virus has spread to more than 16 countries with five confirmed cases in the United States.

The first email said symptoms include fever, cough and breathing difficulties just like the flu. The virus has even led to respiratory illnesses like bronchitis and pneumonia.

Campus Health Services has said students should see their doctor or call immediately if they have traveled abroad and are experiencing these symptoms. Campus Health Services has also confirmed cases of the flu which has no relation to the virus.

U of L spokesperson John Karman said, “We have experts in environmental health and safety on this campus, and we would coordinate with other agencies to address coronavirus or any other similar outbreak situations.”

Faculty, staff and students are encouraged to follow normal strategies to protect themselves like they would from the cold or flu:

  • get a flu shot
  • wash hands frequently or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • cover coughs and sneezes
  • clean and disinfect surfaces
  • avoid contact with sick people

Campus Health Services number is 502-852-6479 (Belknap) or 502-852-6446 (Health Sciences). For more information, visit the Campus Health Services website.

To learn more about the coronavirus, visit the CDC coronavirus website.

Officials declined further comment upon receiving the second email.

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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Flu Cases Uptick In Kentucky, With Four Deaths Friday, Dec 13 2019 

Four people have died from the flu in Kentucky since August. State officials say all those people had other health conditions, and hadn’t received the flu shot.

As flu season ramps up, the Kentucky Department of Public Health also reports that there have been 1,622 confirmed flu cases across the state. Acting State Epidemiologist Doug Thoroughman said not getting vaccinated increases the risk of death, especially in people who have existing health conditions.

“If you have other significant health issues, the flu can really push you over the edge and cause really significant health problem,” Thoroughman said.

One of the reported deaths is from Louisville; an unvaccinated older adult with medical conditions died Dec. 7. Louisville health officials are also reporting a big increase in flu cases over the past two weeks.  

“The fact that we are seeing flu death so early in the year and the fact that Australia has just weathered one of its worst flu seasons on record may mean that we are in for a severe flu season here in the United States and in the rest of the northern hemisphere,” said Sarah Moyer, director of the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness in a press release.

About 12,000 to 61,000 people die every year from the flu or flu-related complications, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  

Health officials recommend people get a flu shot, which is covered by most insurance plans. The recommendation is especially important for children under age five, adults over age 65, pregnant women, nursing home residents and people with chronic conditions.

Thoroughman said Kentucky’s peak flu season usually happens in February or March. And he said the state count of cases and deaths is likely underreported. Regional officials try to identify people who’ve died from the flu, and coroner’s reports are used to identify cases.

“They could have had a heart attack, but it could have been caused because they had influenza,” Thoroughman said. “But you would list by those myocardial infarction as the cause of death, and not flu. You might not even test for flu because the person had a heart attack. We definitely will miss cases every year.”

 

Washing your hands won’t cut it: Free flu shots for Belknap students Friday, Sep 27 2019 

By Catherine Brown —

The University of Louisville started providing free flu shots to students, faculty and staff on Belknap campus Sept. 23. This is a necessity for any individual who will be on any U of L campus this flu season.

According to the Center for Disease Control, vaccines produce T-lymphocytes and antibodies. The immune system often develops sickness-like symptoms such as a fever after receiving a vaccine, but these symptoms are normal and help the body to develop immunity. After these symptoms disappear, the body will remember how to fight that disease in the future should a patient get infected. The CDC also states that those infected shortly before or after the time of the vaccination might still develop the disease as the body has not had enough time to create these memory cells.

The University provided flu shots to students attending classes at the HSC campus last week. U of L even provides free flu and cold self-care kits to students. These kits can be found at Campus Health Medical Services, the Health Promotion office and at designated Flu-shot stations.

Biology professors have been teaching about viruses, bacteria and prevention, and have been telling their students common sense ways to prevent illnesses. One such way is simply by washing your hands.

One of the worst habits that leads to large-spread illness is not washing hands after coughing, sneezing, touching doorknobs, electronics, eating, etc. Not washing hands after these daily routines allows the virus to linger and be picked up by somebody else. This is especially dangerous for immuno-compromised individuals such as those with AIDS, cancer, diabetes and genetic disorders according to cancer.org.

Even U of L students agree that you need to get your flu shot.

“Flu shots are necessary to get because its best to be protected against the disease so you won’t have a chance of getting the virus,” said Destiny Smith, a pre-nursing student.

The debate regarding vaccine hesitancy is ongoing, but the suggested link between vaccines and neurological or physical disorders has since been disproven. Instead, more people tend to not get vaccinations once a disease becomes less prevalent.

Doctors aren’t just suggesting flu shots for fun. People often think they won’t catch a disease because of their good hygienic habits or a strong immune system, but these things aren’t always enough to protect you. Bacteria and viral infections are everywhere, and we carry more of these in our body than we assume.

The World Health Organization claims that about 284,500 people died as a result of the 2009 flu pandemic. Part of this was because people underestimated the seriousness of the H1N1 virus and didn’t receive the flu shot.

Nobody wants to catch your virus. Nobody wants to shake hands with you when you’re carrying harmful bacteria. Simple hand washing isn’t going to make the flu virus go away. 

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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Flu Season Starts Sunday; Kentucky Officials Urge Vaccines Friday, Sep 27 2019 

Health officials are urging Kentuckians to get a flu vaccine as the start of the 2019-2020 season kicks off on Sunday.

The flu season usually lasts until mid-May, and last year’s season was the longest recorded at 21 weeks. Department for Public Health Clinical Affairs Senior Deputy Commissioner Connie White said the flu vaccine usually takes two weeks until it’s fully effective.

“Get that in your system because it does take a while before that will actually start developing the kind of protection that you need from the flu,” White said.

White said there have already been 154 laboratory-confirmed flu cases since August in the commonwealth. Nationally during the last flu season, there were 647,000 flu-related hospitalizations and 61,000 deaths from the flu. In Kentucky 194 people died, including two children.  

Kristina Bryant, a pediatric infectious disease doctor at the University of Louisville Hospital, said some people die from the flu virus itself. But many people get a secondary bacterial infection because their immune system is weakened.

“Every year, people get sick, some flu need to be hospitalized, and some die,” Bryant said. “And so there’s no reason to think that this year is going to be any different.”

The state’s first flu report will come out on Oct. 11, and is based on laboratory-confirmed cases. White said these reports don’t include all the flu cases because health providers are not required to notify the state when they diagnose the virus. But the reports do provide information for the public and for the state on which to base public health outreach efforts.

“So we are getting just a tip of the iceberg,” White said. “But what we get, we know is absolute and true flu.”

The state also gathers voluntary-submitted data from hospitals and doctor’s offices for influenza-like illnesses that haven’t been lab-verified.

“Your nurse practitioner examines you and says, ‘I think you have the flu go home,’ – if there’s no testing done, then we don’t have a way to capture that data,” White said, so the state reports that as a secondary number.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there are a few different groups of people who are most at-risk for suffering more severe complications. Those include children between six months and five years old, pregnant women, people over age 50, residents of nursing homes and people in contact with those groups.

Symptoms of flu include cough, fever, headache, sore throat, sneezing and body aches.