Portrait of sick handsome man wearing grey sweater, yellow hat and spectacles, blowing nose and sneeze into tissue

Every year, only about a third of U.S. adults get a flu shot. While most seniors do get vaccinated, about 35 percent do not.

This can have severe consequences because seniors are more likely to be hospitalized or die of the flu if not vaccinated.   

Approximately 80,00 deaths occur in the U.S. each year as a result of the flu. Additionally, nearly one million people are hospitalized because of the flu virus every year. 

For those who wish to avoid getting a flu shot, here are five things everyone should know about the flu, courtesy of OptiSolve:

1. Try to stand at least six feet away from people when in conversation. The flu virus is spread by droplets created when someone with the illness coughs, sneezes, or talks.

2. Raise the temperature of the room or rooms when someone in an home or  office has the flu. According to the U.K.s National Health Services, the flu virus survives longer in cooler temperatures

3. The surfaces to avoid in a work area are “touch points,” such as counters and tables, chair tops, doorknobs, light switches, and kitchen appliance handles. The virus can live two days on these surfaces.

“We must also remember it is not just ‘touch points’ like door handles and chair tops that get contaminated with the virus,” says Brad Evans, CEO of OptiSolve. “Using imaging technologies, we have discovered viruses, germs, and bacteria on far larger areas surrounding these surfaces, which, if touched, can increase the odds of someone contracting the virus.”

4. Surfaces to be less concerned about are human hands. The flu virus only lives a few minutes on human skin.

5. Always use credit cards. While the flu virus can live on credit cards for a few hours, on paper money, it can survive up to 72 hours and if mixed with human mucus, up to 17 days.