Nonprofits Join Together to Raise Flu Awareness
Three nonprofits collaborate to inform the public on the facts about influenza. The initiative also equips healthcare professionals and families with educational resources.
”Do you know the flu?”
That question forms the basis of a new initiative by the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP), HealthyWomen, and Families Fighting Flu. The campaign, which will run across social and digital media, as well as in traditional print formats, aims to inform the public that they might not know as much about the flu as they think.
The nonprofits will be circulating facts about the disease throughout the flu season. Among them: “You cannot get the flu from the flu vaccine” and “The CDC recommends an annual flu vaccination for everyone 6 months of age and older.” “Flu is not just a bad cold,” said NAPNAP Director of Marketing and Strategic Projects Michele Stickel. “It is a serious, highly contagious viral infection. As many as 20,000 children are hospitalized each year due to flu, and some of those children do not survive the illness. Through this collaboration, we are working to educate families about the importance of annual flu immunization for all family members.”
The collaboration of the three nonprofits, which was initiated through a grant awarded to Families Fighting Flu, bring different perspectives to the initiative. For NAPNAP and its 8,500-plus members, the focus is children’s health and preventative care. Families Fighting Flu, which supports those who have experienced flu-related tragedies, is an advocate for protecting children’s lives. And HealthyWomen aims to help women, who tend to helm the healthcare in a family, with resources to be proactive regarding their family’s health.
To that end, DO YOU KNOW the Flu? has created talking points and fact sheets that healthcare providers can use when speaking with families. There’s also an infographic for healthcare professionals to hang in their offices and for families to access and download. As the flu season continues, more educational resources will be released.
“As pediatric nurse practitioners and pediatric-focused providers, our priority is to provide the best possible preventative care for children and their families,” said NAPNAP President Laura Searcy, MN, APRN, PPCNP-BC, in a press release. “We are in a unique position to educate families about the seriousness of the flu and the significant benefits of immunizing the entire family against flu every year.”
But the main goal of the three organizations involved is to raise awareness on the severity of the flu and the benefits of immunizing children and families against the disease.
“We want to families to understand that the flu vaccine has been available in the U.S. for more than 50 years and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state the flu vaccine is safe and also the best preventative measure we have to protect ourselves, our families, and our communities,” Stickel said. “Ultimately, we all would like to see increased rates of flu immunization, especially in children, across the country each year.”