As kids return to school, medical professionals push flu vaccine, knowing symptoms of cold, flu

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — With Central Illinois schools reconvening within the coming weeks, local health professionals are urging parents to consider vaccinating for the flu early. While coming down with the common cold or flu is still a possibility, the symptoms are synonymous with COVID-19.

UnityPoint Health doctors said it’s important to know your school’s guidelines for dealing with sickness and the virus.

“Remember, most kids get all sorts of illnesses like this throughout the years and the vast majority do well, and this is no different here,” said UniytPoint Health’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Samer Sader. “So the first step is don’t panic. The second step is to check with your physician and the third step is to let your school know. Check with your school district.

UnityPoint Health also urging parents to think ahead for flu season saying it’s easier to control a known virus. Vaccines for the flu are offered at urgent care locations.

“We do not know how COVID will play out, so let’s take out one of the things we do control,” said Sader. “We control the number of people that get immunized for influenza. Let’s take care of that and take out one of the variables that we can actually control.”

UnityPoint Health’s chief medical officer said if your child does get sick the first things you should do is not panic, call your primary care doctor, and then call the school.

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