Student Health Services

Influenza information

To protect yourself and the campus from the spread of influenza, there is a lot you can do. Here are some ways you can lower your risk of contracting or spreading influenza. 

  • Get the flu shot now. Student Health Services has flu vaccines available for students. The international student insurance plan completely covers the cost of the flu shot.  Students can make an appointment by phone, online, or stop by the clinic (Hill Hall, 1st floor).
  • Stock up. Have your own thermometer, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, tissues and gel hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol content). Having your own supply means less chance of coming in contact with the virus. These items are available for purchase at Student Health Services.
  • Wash those hands. Wash hands with soap for at least 20 seconds before eating, drinking or preparing food, and always after using the bathroom and after coughing or sneezing into a tissue.
  • Hands off! Try to keep hands away from eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Update your contact list. Add Student Health Services to your phone: 320-308-3191.

How to tell if you have the cold or the flu:

Cold Influenza
  • Comes on gradually
  • Fever unlikely
  • Stomach feels okay
  • Body aches unlikely
  • Cough possible
  • Stuffy/runny nose
  • Sore throat possible
  • Comes on quickly
  • Fever probable
  • Vomiting diarrhea
  • Body aches possible
  • Chills possible
  • Dry cough possible
  • Stuffy/runny nose
  • Sore throat possible

What to do if you believe you have influenza

  • Take your temperature. If you have a fever (100°F or higher), you should stay home from work and class until you have been completely fever-free (without fever-reducing medication) for at least 24 hours, and you feel well. For most people, this will be 3 to 5 days.
  • If you have a “high-risk” medical condition call your health care provider. High risk medical conditions are: asthma or other chronic pulmonary disease, cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, pregnancy, weakened immune system, or kidney, liver, blood, or neurological disorders. Antiviral medications are recommended for “high-risk” cases and should be taken as soon as possible.
  • No appointment needed. Most people recover on their own without medical treatment. Drink fluids to stay hydrated, get plenty of rest and eat what you can. Use ibuprofen and acetaminophen, as directed, to manage fever and body aches. Call a health care provider if your symptoms are not improving after 3 to 4 days. Seek immediate medical attention if you experience any of the symptoms listed below.
  • No Antibiotics. Antibiotics do not have any effect because influenza is caused by a virus.
  • Communicate. Contact your professors, employer, etc. to let them know you have influenza symptoms and cannot return to class or work until you’re better. You’ll be responsible for getting assignments you have missed.
  • Isolate. Influenza is very contagious- going to work or class puts others at risk. Avoid public places including public transportation until your fever and symptoms are resolving.
  • Don’t share. Flu viruses typically survive on surfaces for 2 to 8 hours, so do not share towels, clothing, eating utensils, keyboards, remote controls, etc., while you are infectious.
  • Clean up. When you recover, wash your own sheets and towels. Empty your trash yourself.

When to seek medical advice

  • Shortness of breath or trouble breathing
  • Confusion or sudden dizziness
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • Flu symptoms that improve but then return
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • Suddenly with fever and worse cough

For additional help, please contact:

Student Health Services
Hill Hall, 1st Floor