Health Center receives ‘mialestone’ accreditation

The Sam Houston State University Health Center has achieved accreditation by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Care (AAAHC) according to Keith Lott, Director of the Health Center.

Approximately three years after deciding to pursue accreditation, the Health Center scheduled an on-site survey that was conducted this September.

During the survey process, the department’s performance in 24 broad categories including Quality of Care, Quality Improvement, and Administration were measured against rigorous and nationally recognized standards. On January 5, 2007, the Health Center was notified that it was awarded the highest degree of accreditation for a three-year term.

“This achievement is an important milestone in the growth of our department that has taken place over the past six years. Such an accomplishment is not the result of one person’s efforts or simplistic tasks completed over a short period of time. This accomplishment is a result of a sustained group effort effecting significant improvement in our department’s operation. The favorable comparison of our departmental operations against the rigorous standards of a nationally recognized entity provides formal confirmation that our department has achieved excellence. Accreditation is a tangible indicator of how far we have come over the past six years,” said Lott.

Upon notifying the Health Center of the accreditation decision, Roy Grekin, MD, the Accreditation Association President, commented, “Achieving accreditation demands a high level of dedication and effort. The SHSU Student Health Center is to be commended for this accomplishment.”

Sam Houston State University joins the elite company of only four other public universities in Texas that have accredited health centers. Those universities include Texas A&M University, Texas State University, University of Texas, and University of Texas-Pan American . More information regarding accreditation and AAAHC can be found at

Key Facts about Influenza and the Influenza Vaccine

Courtesy of the Student Health Center and

What is Influenza (Also Called Flu)?

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The best way to prevent the flu is by getting a flu vaccination each year.

Every year in the United States, on average: 5% to 20% of the population gets the flu;

more than 200,000 people are hospitalized from flu complications, and about 36,000 people die from flu.

Some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at high risk for serious flu complications.

Symptoms of Flu

Symptoms of flu include: fever (usually high), headache, extreme tiredness, dry cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle aches.

Stomach symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, also can occur but are more common in children than adults.

Complications of Flu

Complications of flu can include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration, and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes.

How Flu Spreads

Flu viruses spread mainly from person to person through coughing or sneezing of people with influenza. Sometimes people may become infected by touching something with flu viruses on it and then touching their mouth or nose.

Most healthy adults may be able to infect others beginning 1 day before symptoms develop and up to 5 days after becoming sick. That means that you may be able to pass on the flu to someone else before you know you are sick, as well as while you are sick.

Preventing the Flu: Get Vaccinated

The single best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu vaccination each year.

There are two types of vaccines:

The “flu shot” – an inactivated vaccine (containing killed virus) that is given with a needle. The flu shot is approved for use in people 6 months of age and older, including healthy people and people with chronic medical conditions.

An alternative to the flu shot is the nasal-spray flu vaccine.

When to Get Vaccinated

October or November is the best time to get vaccinated, but getting vaccinated in December or even later can still be beneficial since most influenza activity occurs in January or later in most years. Though it varies, flu season can last as late as May.

Who Should Get Vaccinated?

In general, anyone who wants to reduce their chances of getting the flu can get vaccinated.

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