Next month, the 2010 Olympic Winter Games will begin in Canada. The world’s top athletes will gather in Vancouver, along with spectators from across the globe. These Games inspire all Americans to be physically active and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
One immediate step that you can take to protect your health is to get your H1N1 flu vaccination. Olympians, Paralympians and hopefuls training for Vancouver are doing just that. Today, athletes, coaches, and staff who are Vancouver bound are getting vaccinated against the H1N1 flu at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado and the 2010 U.S. Cross Country Championships in Anchorage, Alaska. We urge all Americans to do the same and get their H1N1 vaccine.
As a doctor, I’ve treated patients during many flu seasons. Unfortunately, H1N1 has already made the 2009-2010 flu season one of the most challenging in recent memory. Ninety-nine percent of the flu that is making people sick in the U.S. is H1N1. Even though H1N1 is decreasing in some areas the flu is unpredictable – we could see more illness as flu season continues.
The H1N1 vaccine is safe, effective, and is the best way to protect ourselves and our loved ones from the flu.
Dr. Regina Benjamin is the U.S. Surgeon General