Flumist offers alternative option to shot

Brian Pauline and Brian Pauline

With the cold and flu season in full swing, students are well aware of the risk contracting the flu before finals can bring. To prevent it, students are taking measures like getting the flu vaccine and the flumist.

Betty White an RN at the Health Center administered the mists and generally looked after students at the Student Union.”The flushot is in such a shortage right now that the flumist is maybe all that some people can get ahold of,” White said.

Lower turnout this year could be due to students beter protecting themselves or getting the flushot. However since the original vaccine was contaminated, this may be all the protection students can get.

According to White, the nasally administered mist costs $50 dollars and provides a person’s immune system a year of protection like the flu vaccine. But for students who fear getting shots or are scared of needles it is more preferred.

Along with flumist the health center offered students free blood pressure screenings and gave away food discount tickets to faculty who participated.

Student David Scharfeld studying Criminal Justice missed the flushot this year when the Health Center was giving it out, he opted instead to get the mist.

“I had it (the flu) last year and the year before all around the same time. I had it finals week two years in a row so I don’t want it to happen again,” Scharfeld said.

Students who are immune compromised cannot get the flumist. Asthma, respiratory illnesses, Diabetes or other metabolic illnesses fall under this category. Students who live with people with these illnesses are also advised not to get the flumist.