Proactive planning for flu season in local assisted living communities

Local News

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — With flu season approaching, assisted and independent living communities are taking extra precautions to keep their residents safe. A facility in Rochester will provide mobile flu clinics.

Watermark’s Legacy Communities have made it easier for pharmacists to come directly to assisted living and independent homes, helping those who might not be able to get around, get the flu shot.

“We have set up flu clinics with Health Direct, we’re partnering with them again, to provide the vaccination to all of our residents and staff,” Executive Director at Legacy Keri Cuyler said. “This system’s been working out very well for us, through the COVID vaccine and the flu clinics.”

Mike Maenza with Health Direct Pharmacy, specializes in nursing homes and group homes to deliver care.

“We bring our pharmacists, we bring our support staff and we really just knock it out in a few hours,” Maenza said.

Experts say this flu season could pack a punch. Cuyler says they are already following CDC guidelines for COVID-19, which they will keep on doing for the flu.

Dr. Michael Mendoza, the Public Health Commissioner, says the region should be prepared for flu numbers the way they looked in 2019. Last year, flu cases were lower than expected.

“As a country, prior to the 2020 flu season, we were accustomed to seeing 50,000 people die because of the flu,” Mendoza said.

Both Cuyler and Maenza say the good news when it comes to seniors, — is they often prefer to take precautions over others. In the process, preserving health and saving lives. 

They’re the first ones to be calling to say ‘when are we getting the flu (shot), are we getting boosters? Sign us up,'” Maenza said.

Legacy Communities also plan to follow a similar approach to outreach for COVID-19 booster shots.

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