What Can You Do?
As we have shared in previous communications, there are several self-care information tips and other practical steps that we all can take to reduce the risk of illness, in general. At present, influenza (flu) and other contagious illnesses actually pose a greater risk to the health our our campus community members than Ebola does, especially as we enter flu season.
Given that some symptoms of Ebola overlap with symptoms of influenza, there is obvious potential for "false alarms" that could lead to undue panic and confusion. Keep in mind that although both Ebola and influenza (flu) can begin with abrupt onset of fever, fatigue and body aches, influenza usually is accompanied by respiratory symptoms (cough, congestion, sore throat). Ebola usually does NOT cause cough or congestion. Ebola typically causes abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea, and always requires close contact with a symptomatic Ebola patient in the prior 21 days.
As a community, it would be prudent for us to reduce the risk of false alarms. This is the time of year when we prepare for the flu season, and our Student Health Center is offering flu shots to faculty and staff for $15.