College Students Hit Hard By H1N1 Flu Strain

By: Anthony Sabella Email
By: Anthony Sabella Email

Since the new semester began at Michigan State, the Olin Health Center has gotten busier and busier.

But when you consider that H1N1 mainly impacts healthy, young adults, it's easy to see why. Students like Bo Provencher are doing everything they can to prevent getting sick and the obvious choice is the flu shot.

"Around my hometown, near Oakland, three kids died because it later became pneumonia and my parents wanted me to get one and I'm really looking for one," said the MSU sophomore.

To help, MSU is offering the shots all across campus. Unfortunately for Provencher, demand for appointments is high and Kathi Braunlich, with MSU Student Health Services, wouldn't have it any other way.

"We've had a real increase in the number of people coming in for flu shots, which is something we normally don't see," she said.

Lansing Community College is partnering with the Ingham County Health Department to open its second flu shot clinic of the season, next Friday.

"What we need to do, not only as an institution, but the public, is really understand how the flu is spread and what you can do to prevent the flu," said Margie White, Dean of LCC Health and Human Services.

Luckily, the H1N1 strain is in this year's flu vaccine, making it easily preventable.

"We know if we increase the number of people with the flu vaccine, they have a good chance of being protected from the flu this season," said Angela Minicuci, Public Information Officer for the Michigan Department of Community Health.

But when you're living and learning in close quarters, it never hurts to take extra precautions, like washing hands and not touching your face after touching things, like handrails and doorknobs.

LCC's flu shot clinic is scheduled for Friday, January 24 at the Health and Human Services building, from 9 a.m. to noon.

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