#FLUgitives live in every town in America; they could be hiding in your workplace, your gym, the grocery store, or even in your own home. Each year in the U.S., 1 in 5 people, or up to 20 percent of the population, gets the flu and an estimated 226,000 people are hospitalized from influenza-related complications. But since the single most important thing adults can do to help prevent spreading the flu is to get their annual flu vaccination, these #FLUgitives should not wait. #FLUgitives are encouraged to come out of hiding, round up other #FLUgitives and turn themselves in to their healthcare provider to learn about the seriousness of influenza and their available vaccine options.
'Because flu season can begin as early as October and last through May, the best prevention for those planning to get their annual flu shot is to get it as early as possible in the season, allowing your body time to build up its immunity,' said Carlos E. Picone, M.D., F.C.C.P., Vice-Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, D.C.
Research has shown that social influences are a primary factor in the adoption of health behaviors. The FLUgitives campaign leverages the positive power of social peer influence to drive more people to help protect themselves against the flu by getting vaccinated and features four #FLUgitives whom everyone might know - or may even relate to themselves:
The Scaredy Cat, whose anxiety about everything delays him getting a vaccine he knows he needs
The Latest and Greatest Guy, who wants the newest version of everything, but has yet to learn about the latest in vaccine-delivery technology
The Turbo Mom, whose hectic schedule leaves little time for focusing on her own health
The Fitness Fanatic, who puts his workout before anything else - including his health
As seen in 2012 and early 2013, influenza seasons are unpredictable and can be severe. According to the CDC, influenza activity during the 2012-2013 flu season started about four weeks early and was intense. #FLUgitives can turn themselves or others in by visiting the campaign Facebook page at FLUgitives.com. There, they can access and share humorous and informational videos to encourage other #FLUgitives to get their yearly flu vaccination. They can also see just how bad they and their friends could look if they get the flu by using the FLUify(TM) photo app at FLUgitives.com/fluify.
Learn more about the flu and vaccination options now so you can stop running as a FLUgitive. Visit FLUgitives.com and like the page, FLUify your photos with our FLUify app and follow @FLUgitives on Twitter. Be sure to use the hashtag #FLUgitives. A shareable digital capsule can also be found in the Interact Tab on FLUgitives.com.