Health Services

Administrative Letter

February 9, 2018

Dear Administrator:

As you are likely aware, Governor Cuomo in response to the increasing numbers of cases of influenza (flu) in New York State has directed the Suffolk County Department of Health Services to provide educational information about the flu for those that work with vulnerable populations. Additionally, if your organization is experiencing difficulty in obtaining flu vaccination for your constituents or clients, our Department can provide you with assistance.

It is vitally important that as many Suffolk County residents as possible receive the flu vaccine, especially those that are in contact with individuals at high risk of complications from influenza, such as people 65 years and older, people of any age with certain chronic medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease), pregnant women, and young children. Additionally, it is important that people take everyday precautions to prevent the spread of influenza, such as handwashing, covering coughs and sneezes, and clean and disinfect contaminated surfaces. For those that do contract the flu, they should ask their healthcare provider about taking prescription antiviral medications and stay home until fever free (without fever reducing medications) for at least 24 hours.

Flu information and handouts that can be helpful for your constituents can be found at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/resource-center/freeresources/print/print-family.htm. Attached are some of these handouts.

If you would like our assistance in obtaining flu vaccine for your programs, constituents, or clients, please contact our Bureau of Epidemiology and Disease Control office at 631-854-0333 (Monday through Friday from 9 am to 5 pm) and we will try to assist you.

Please help us to get the word out on the importance of preventing the spread of influenza and the disease and its complications.

Thank you.

Sincerely,

James L. Tomarken, M.D., M.S.W., M.P.H., M.B.A., F.R.C.P.C., F.A.C.P.
Commissioner