The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends getting the flu shot by the end of October, which is the start of the flu season. With flu spreading between the months of October and March, the CDC urges everyone six months and older to get the vaccine. Luckily, one Ole Miss student group is ensuring this opportunity is offered to all students.
Students in the University of Mississippi School of Pharmacy are administering flu shots on campus.
“So as pharmacy students, we are trained in giving immunizations, and as pharmacists in the community, we will be doing that as part of our job. This is a really great way for students to practice their skills, and at the same time, promote this vaccination and knowledge to the public,” said Yujing Zhang, a second-year pharmacy student.
Students in the American Pharmacists Association provide flu vaccines as a part of their annual project with Operation Immunization. The organization’s goal is to surpass last year’s 1,400 administered vaccinations. Their accessibility to many students makes the goal a definite possibility.
“So far we’ve had locations all over campus. We’ve had them at the law school. We’ve had them at the Manning Center. We’ve had them in different sorority and fraternity houses. Students have been very receptive to it,” Zhang said.
However, despite the American Pharmacists Association’s efforts, students still fell victim to the flu and other illnesses. Many say it is just that time of year.
“We just finished midterm season, and the semester is getting a lot tougher, and classes are getting harder. I think everybody is just run down,” said Leah Davis, a sophomore at the University of Mississippi.
Davis struggled with the early stages of the flu during the first part of the semester, and she was ill for nearly three weeks before she started to feel healthy again. Davis, who is involved with choral activities, said she could not sing for an entire week.
“I went to the doctor on a Friday because I felt awful, but I went to the Grove on Saturday, which I probably shouldn’t have done,” Davis said. “But I was like I’ll be fine because I had medicine and everything, but I still felt really bad”
Pharmacy Health Services on campus also provide flu shots to students. They have seen nearly four students per day come to receive the vaccine, and many have already been diagnosed with the flu.
“It’s just kind of going around and around and around. I remember when I was sick, it was a wave. Everybody had like sinus infections, bronchitis, and stuff. Now it’s like more people are sick, like it’s just never going away,” Davis said. “I call it the Ole Miss plague.”