As flu activity increases statewide, the City of Milwaukee Health Department (MHD) is reminding all city and county residents that information and medical advice related to the seasonal flu are just a phone call away thanks to Flu on CallTM, a toll-free helpline.
“With flu cases increasing statewide, we remind all area residents that getting vaccinated is the single best way to protect yourself and those around you from getting sick,” said Commissioner of Health Bevan K. Baker.
If you are experiencing flu symptoms, caring for someone who is ill or have questions related to the flu, you can call the hotline at 1-855-435-8722.
The hotline is open Mondays through Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. as part of a pilot project in two cities. Callers can receive support from trained information specialists and medical experts.
The flu is among the most common respiratory illnesses. The virus is spread through the air when someone who is sick coughs, sneezes or speaks. Symptoms of seasonal flu include fever, cough, sore throat, stuffy nose, muscle or body aches and fatigue.
The flu can be serious, leading to hospitalization and sometimes death. Those especially at risk for complications from the flu include people with certain medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes and lung disease, as well as the elderly, pregnant women and young children. A vaccination is recommended for those over six months old.
Along with vaccination, antiviral medications can be highly effective in reducing the severity and duration of illness. Frequent hand washing and covering coughs and sneezes with your elbow can reduce the spread of the flu and other viruses common during the winter months.