Pharmacist recommends getting ahead of the flu while you can

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

According to officials at the Jefferson County Department of Health, the number of reported influenza-like cases have more than doubled since this time last year.

If you think you have the flu, pharmacists recommend you get ahead of it.

“This year was probably more of a bang earlier than we expected,” said Rebecca Sorrell, a pharmacist at Ritch’s Pharmacy in Mountain Brook.

Sorrell said the Birmingham area started seeing the flu the last week of October. It typically doesn’t come around until after Thanksgiving.

“We’ll see another hit around March but flu season can go as late as May,” she said.”

Her pharmacy has been busy the last few weeks, filling prescriptions for Tamiflu.

“It’s anywhere from 10 to 25 a day,” she said. “There have been some pharmacies who ran out, but fortunately we happen to have some in stock but we’ve all had limited supplies for a little while.”

If you think you might have the flu, she said you should pick up the phone and call your doctor.

“Some might have a protocol now where you can start Tamiflu before you come in because the offices are packed full of people who are really sick.”

Even if you don’t think you have it, f you know someone who does–it’s not a bad idea to go ahead and get a prescription for yourself.

“Let’s say I had the flu and you’re my roommate and you want to not get the flu, then you would take one capsule daily for ten days,” said Sorrell.

Sorrell also recommends getting a flu vaccine if you haven’t had one yet. She said it can lessen the severity of the flu if you get it and you’ve had the shot.

“For example, instead of being sick for seven to ten days, you might get away with 48 or 72 hours.”

Copyright 2015 WBRC. All rights reserved.

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Pharmacist recommends getting ahead of the flu while you can
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