Vielmetti gears up to fight flu season

Jenean Zahran

With flu season just around the corner, doctors are urging people of all ages to get vaccinated with a seasonal flu shot.

At NMU, the Vielmetti Health Center is planning to have three clinic days for students.

To make it more convenient for students, the health center will be offering three different clinic days for a chance to get the flu shot.

The cost for the shot is $25 for those whose health insurance does not cover the vaccine.

If a student’s insurance does cover the cost, it is recommended to contact the health center with the insurance information beforehand.

Students must bring valid proof of health insurance.

The type of vaccine the health center will be offering students is the basic injection with a needle.

Other health facilities can offer the live, attenuated vaccine by spraying it into the nostrils.

Another variant is a low dose intradermal vaccine that is administered just under the skin with a small needle.

The Vielmetti Health Center has planned for their clinics to be open for Thursday, Sept. 20 in the lobby of Cohodas from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 11 at the Peter White Lounge in the UC from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and on Thursday, Oct. 18 in the lower level of the LRC hallway from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Dr. David Luoma, Medical Director of the Vielmetti Health Center, strongly believes that students should receive the flu shot.

“Students are at high risk due to classrooms, dorms and dining areas, so possible exposure is high,” Luoma said. “Getting the flu can be severe and impact their class attendance. Getting vaccinated also protects those around us as well.”

Luoma wants people to be aware that the shot is very safe, and only minor side effects should be experienced.

“Fifteen to 20 percent of people will get a sore arm for a day, and it’s usually mild,” Luoma said. “What keeps people from getting the immunization can range from fear of needles, thinking they will get ill, and misconceptions about safety.”

Some people may get the flu shot regardless of knowing what is contained within the vaccine.
According to the Centers for Disease and Control Prevention (CDC), the flu shot contains three seasonal influenza viruses that are grown in eggs.

The vaccine varies from year to year, to protect against three influenza viruses that research showed will be most common during the upcoming season, according to the CDC website.

Kelsey Byard, a junior and sociology major, claims that she has known multiple people who despite receiving the vaccination have still ended up coming down with the flue.

“I always hear people getting sick after getting the flu shot; Why would I get it?” Byard said. “If I come down with the flu this year, I will just tough it out. That’s why we have immune systems.”

The website for the CDC does state that protection against the flu is never 100 percent, and some people can still contract the flu after being vaccinated.

The people who are recommended to get the flu shot are woman who may be pregnant, people that are 65 years of age and older or people who have certain medical conditions such as asthma or chronic lung disease.

Sophia Thomas, a junior and human center of design major, has been getting the flu shot for the past couple of years through NMU’s health center.

“I would always get it because it was free with my insurance,” Thomas said. “Also because my mom works in an elementary school and I didn’t want to contract anything from my house when I went home for the holidays.”

Thomas also stated that she did not get the flu even in the years in which she did not receive the flu vaccination.