It’s beginning to look a lot like flu season

It actually is flu season! And I am unfortunately getting sick. I haven’t gotten my flu vaccine (not that this is 100% protection in and of itself), and now I am just hoping I don’t have the INFLUENZA. 🙂

A lil bit about the flu:

– Flu season lasts annually from October to March
– Every year, it kills upwards of 30,000 people in the U.S. alone!
– It spreads rapidly via coughs and sneezes (maybe even just talking…stay away from passionate spitter-speakers).
– It looks a lot like the common cold at first, but an acute fever can be indicative of the flu.
– It is an enveloped virus, thus EASILY KILLED BY WASHING HANDS! Wash your hands like you get paid to do it!!
– This year, the trivalent vaccine consists of A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)- like virus, an A/Texas/50/2012 (H3N2)-like virus, and a B/Massachusetts/2/2012-like virus. The quadrivalent one will include B/Brisbane/60/2008-like virus in addition to the first 3.

Interestingly, the vaccine is always a guess based on the trends of the previous year’s data. Every year the process starts in January, where the FDA and CDC examine data and distribute virus seeds to vaccine makers. Then vaccines are worked on and come out shortly before flu season starts. So when H1N1 (Swine 09!) hit, the virus wasn’t a part of the predicted vaccine, and there was a scramble to get a vaccine made and distributed to the general population.

Also, us Americans don’t know how to be sick people. When you get sick, take care of yourself!!! Go home and eat soup and sleep and drink water and make yourself as happy as possible since everything else will feel super miserable. This is such an unfortunate thing as our work mindset doesn’t allow people to take as many sick leaves and paid off-days as we need to. I think it would be a great thing to have companies base payment on how much work people do rather than how much time they spend at work. So everyone could have 4 hour work days if they really wanted. And this would reward productivity. Any ideas on how to change policy?

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