September 18, 2020
The Latest Influenza and COVID-19 Updates
Advocate Aurora COVID-19 Virtual Care Program

Advocate Aurora Health and the State of Illinois have partnered to help people recover from COVID 19 safely at home. The program is available to all residents over 12 months of age with known exposure to COVID 19 or experiencing COVID like symptoms. The program is free and there are no insurance requirements.

The program offers:
  • Daily virtual check ins via our LiveWell app or website for a period of 14 days
  • Educational information
  • Symptom self management and support
  • A home monitoring kit for those who qualify

If you’re an Illinois resident, call 866 443 2584 to enroll.

Will a mask help during flu season?

By: Neda Veselinovic, a public affairs coordinator at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital

Wearing a face mask can protect those around you from contracting COVID-19. But, can it also prevent the spread of other respiratory illnesses like the flu?

“Influenza is spread similarly to COVID-19, so wearing a mask during flu season, or whenever we have cold-like symptoms, is recommended,” says Dr. Kevin Koo, family medicine physician at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, IL. “This current pandemic has changed how we view our prevention of all respiratory diseases, of which influenza is a potentially deadly one.”

Flu Season Virtual Conversation

Recently, Advocate Aurora Health hosted a Living Well Virtual Community Conversation tackling the timely topic of the upcoming flu season and the importance of flu vaccinations for marginalized communities.

Advocate Aurora experts shared information about the flu and its symptoms, insight between the connection of the flu and COVID-19, debunked misconceptions about vaccinations and shared how to access flu shots and ways to keep families safe this upcoming season.

View the conversation in English and Spanish.

Flu Vaccinations

This year, with the COVID-19 pandemic continuing as the flu season looms, getting a flu shot is more important now than ever. Starting September 15, community members can schedule a flu shot online at or through the Advocate Aurora Health LiveWell app. Both options allow you to find the nearest location, and some locations will offer drive-thru flu shots.

Additionally, Advocate Aurora Health will be providing flu vaccines to underserved communities in Chicago and Milwaukee as part of our commitment to health equity. More information will be forthcoming as details are finalized.
Possible Post-Flu Shot Symptoms

While the influenza vaccine is generally accepted as being very safe, it is possible to have either localized or generalized side effects. Side effects you may experience occur within 12 hours to a few days of the vaccine administration and should improve within 48 hours.

What to do if you experience symptoms within 48 hours after receiving the flu vaccine: 

  • If you experience any of the symptoms shown in bold within 3 days of your influenza vaccination, you should continue to monitor your symptoms for the next 48 hours. 
  • If your symptoms do not improve after 48 hours, contact your healthcare provider.
  • If you need immediate medical attention, call 911 or visit the emergency department as needed. 

Possible side effects to influenza vaccine include: (In BOLD are symptoms similar to symptoms of COVID-19)

  • Soreness, redness, and/or swelling from the shot 
  • Headache (low grade) 
  • Fever 
  • Nausea 
  • Muscle aches 
  • Difficulty breathing 
  • Weakness (similar to fatigue) 
  • Hoarseness or wheezing 
  • Swelling around the eyes or lips 
  • Hives 
  • Paleness 
  • A fast heartbeat or dizziness
The Latest Resources from Advocate Aurora Health
See flyer in English and Spanish
Advocate Aurora Health Safe Care Promise

Your health and safety is our highest priority. We want you to feel confident that you will be safe when you enter an Advocate Aurora Health site of care. The Advocate Aurora Safe Care promise provides additional measures to protect you and our team members.

Measures include virtual check-in, screening of those who enter, enhanced cleaning and more. See Safe Care Promise video and flyers in English and Spanish.

See Safe Care website in English and Spanish.
Advocate Aurora Health Limited Visitor Guidelines

As we navigate this pandemic, we continue to update our visitor guidelines to best live out our Safe Care promise. Beginning Thursday, Sept. 10, all Advocate Aurora Health hospitals will implement Limited Visitor Guidelines:

Non-COVID-19 Patients
  • two designated visitors for the duration of inpatient stay, one visitor at a time
  • one designated visitor for emergency department (adult)
  • one visitor for outpatient hospital department-based procedure and surgery
  • three visitors for end-of-life situations in a room at a time

COVID-19 Positive Patients or Patients Suspected of Having COVID-19
  • No visitors are allowed, with few exceptions.

Pediatric Non-COVID-19 Patients
  • two parents/caregivers at the same time for inpatient pediatrics
  • two parents/caregivers for pediatric emergency department
  • two parents/caregivers for NICU private rooms or 1 parent/caregiver for NICU open pod configuration

Pediatric COVID-19 Positive or Patients Suspected of Having COVID-19
  • one parent/caregiver for patients 21 years of age and under

Pediatric Outpatient Departments and Outpatient Surgery
  • one parent/caregiver for pediatric patients

Updated Advocate Aurora Health Masking Policy for Patients and Visitors

Due to increased risk of exposure and infection, Advocate Aurora Health has updated its universal masking policy to prohibit those unable to wear a mask to visit our sites. We will support those unable to wear a mask through our virtual visit program. 

Additionally, our approved masks now only include procedure masks and cloth masks.

Masks not allowed at our sites now include: N95s with exhalation valve, gaiters, bandannas or face shields without a mask – all of which do not properly protect others from what is breathed out. 

All of our sites are equipped with procedure masks for those who do not have an Advocate Aurora-approved mask upon arrival.
5 Things you Need to Know about Contact Tracing

With the news of contact tracing scams, and because contract tracing helps stop the spread of COVID-19, it’s important to recognize a real contact tracer from a fake one. Reporting scammers helps stop them, too. Report fake contact tracers to your state and at

Please share the 5 Things You Need To Know about contact tracing with your community:

  1. Real contact tracers won’t ask you for money.
  2. Contact tracing doesn’t require your bank account or credit card number.
  3. Your immigration status doesn’t matter for contact tracing, so real tracers won’t ask. If they do, you can bet it’s a scam.
  4. Legitimate contact tracers will never ask for your Social Security number.
  5. Do not click on a link in a text or email. Doing so can download malware onto your device.

Advocate Aurora Health COVID-19 Resources
The spread of COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving situation. Continue to check the CDC website for up-to-date information and guidance.

See a list of COVID-19 resources specifically for faith communities in Illinois and Wisconsin, including resiliency resources, mental health resources, guidance on safely reopening your house of worship and more.

The Advocate Aurora Health COVID-19 hotline at 1-866-4-HEALTH is staffed by clinicians who can answer questions about symptoms and determine the next steps in care.

Our online COVID-19 Symptom Checker is the best way for patients to find the care they need. By answering a few simple questions, they’ll quickly learn what they need to do next – from seeing a provider with a video visit – 24/7 – to contacting their doctor.

The Advocate Aurora Health LiveWell app offers virtual appointments and virtual visits with physicians 24-hours a day.

The Advocate Aurora Health COVID-19 Resource Center in English and Spanish provides the most up-to-date information, tools and resources, including the policies for visiting patients in our hospitals, a COVID-19 Symptom Checker, CDC resources, ways you can donate, volunteer and help—and more.

Produced by a team of seasoned journalists and public affairs professionals from across Advocate Aurora Health, health enews is your go-to source for health news and information you can trust. Click here to subscribe.

Flyers to Download and Share

How to Stay Safe Dining at a Restaurant English version

How to Stay Safe at Gatherings and Cookouts English version

Phase 4 Reminders English version and Spanish version

How to Protect Yourself and Others While Traveling in English

Mask Educational Flyer in English and Spanish

How to Prevent Foggy Glasses While Safely Masking in English

What Activities are the Safest? in English and Spanish

For Your Health Shopping List in English and Spanish

The Power of Social Distancing Flyer: English version and Spanish version

COVID-19 Symptom Checker Information English version and Spanish version

COVID-19 Handout English version and Spanish version

COVID-19 Handout #2 English version and Spanish version

Learn the Difference Between Coronavirus, Flu and Allergies English version and Spanish version

E-Newsletters to Share

COVID-19 resource in Spanish that shares important tips to stay safe, flyers you can share with your community, links to the Advocate Aurora Health COVID-19 Resource Center and more.

A resource on safely preparing and sharing food includes information on how to avoid food or food packaging contamination and how to deliver food safely.

Worship Slides

Spanish COVID-19 Resources from CDC and Ad Council
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
• Website for all CDC COVID-19 Communication Resources here
• Public Service Announcements here
• Resources to Print here
• COVID-19 Videos here
Ad Council Videos:
Sneezing and Coughing: Spanish Language for Kids
Time to Wash Your Hands: Spanish Language for Kids
Washy, Washy: Spanish for Kids
Handwash Hero: Spanish Language PSA
Social Distancing Hero: Spanish Language PSA
Protégete a Ti Mismo – Distanciamiento Social :60: Protect Yourself/Socially Distance :60
Protégete a Ti Mismo – Distanciamiento Social :30: Protect Yourself/Socially Distance :30
Protégete a Ti Mismo – Distanciamiento Social :15: Protect Yourself/Socially Distance :15
Alone Together: Spanish Language PSA
Advocate Aurora Health-Sponsored Events
American Heart Association Metro-Chicago Virtual Heart Walk
Sept. 18 from 12 p.m. until Sept. 19 at 5 p.m.

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer - Details coming soon!

Questions? Email Christine Rybicki, Manager, Community Relations

Gambling in Our Community

Sept. 18: Gambling and Health - Including Gambling During COVID-19

Oct. 23: Safer Sports Betting - What You Need to Know

Nov. 13: Think Teens Don't Gamble? Think Again!

Email for more details, or to ask about the sessions we will hold in Spanish.
Support Teams and Mental Health Care

During COVID-19, mental health needs have skyrocketed and our volunteers are not always comfortable and trained in addressing them. In this workshop, we will:

  • Look at how to equip our volunteers and help them to be comfortable in addressing mental health issues with those they care for.

  • Learn about different mental health challenges, and how to train our volunteers to use active listening skills, maintain good boundaries and when and how to make a referral to a mental health professional.

Participants will walk away with practical tips and ideas for how their teams can best serve those within the community who are experiencing mental health issues.

Freshstart Smoking Cessation Program

You can improve health, breathe easier and save money when you overcome nicotine dependence. Learn how by attending Freshstart, a free four-week virtual smoking cessation program. Please note: all participants are encouraged to attend all four sessions.

To register, contact Laurie Dlouhy, RN
Prayer Support Line

The Prayer Support Line allows us to come together in unity to release our burdens, receive comfort and express our gratitude to God for holding us close during this pandemic. The Prayer Support Line is a place where we can join with others in prayer for health, healing and spiritual care with the expectation that God will meet us and provide us with encouragement.
Events from our Partners
Empowering Faith Communities to Recognize and Respond to Child Abuse

A Virtual, Interfaith Workshop with Victor Vieth with Zero Abuse Project in Minnesota and Honorable Rev. Everett Mitchell, Dane County Circuit Judge and Senior Pastor of Christ the Solid Rock Baptist Church.

Participants will learn:

  • best practices to prevent abuse within faith communities,
  • how to recognize and respond to physical, emotional and spiritual impact of child abuse,
  • spiritual care for both survivors and offenders,
  • how to recognize and respond to sexual behaviors of children,
  • corporal punishment, the law and the faith community,
  • optimal response to allegations of child abuse within a congregation.

Virtual Racial Healing Circle Series

Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation is providing opportunities for the greater Chicago community to confront racism and heal from the traumas of racism by participating in racial healing circles.

The racial healing circle experience relies on intentional listening and opening your heart space to unearth truths and conscious and unconscious biases. Participants can raise their awareness, consciousness, compassion, and empathy for others through the process. It’s a tool that can facilitate trust and build authentic relationships among participants and help bridge divides created by real and perceived differences.
Loss of a Spouse Seminar
Sept. 26, 1:00-3:00 p.m.

Grieving the death of a spouse? Do you know someone who is? Your life has changed forever. The daily emotions and challenges can seem too hard to bear. During this webinar you'll hear:

  • practical advice from others who've been there,
  • what to expect in your grief,
  • how to cope with life without your spouse,
  • why it won't always hurt this much.

To register, call 708-366-6900 or email
Faith as a Social Determinant of Health
Oct. 5, 2:00-3:00 p.m.

Henry Ford Macomb Hospitals will present this webinar that addresses how social determinants impact health and health outcomes. The webinar will:
describe how one's own faith and individually lived experiences mightinfluence one's perception of social determinants of health
outline potential strategies for integrating a social determinant of health perspective into health ministry.

To register, email Madelyn Humbert at or Janet Banks-McElrath at
Virtual Trauma-Informed Symposium Series

Through a series of workshops, we will explore systemic trauma, learn about mental health and emotional well-being, explore the impact of social media on community violence and create an action plan on how to address social justice. We will end this series with a community panel to look at trauma from a different lens and celebrate with a healing circle of different artist performances.
Grief Support Group
Tuesdays, from Oct. 6-Jan. 12, 7:00-9:00 p.m.

GriefShare is a special weekly seminar and support group designed to help you rebuild your life after losing a loved one. Our group is led by caring people who have experienced grief and want to help you through the difficult days ahead.

To register, call 708-366-6900 or email
Summit on Advanced Illness Care

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought attention to long-standing problems in our healthcare system which keep the most vulnerable among us from receiving high-quality care. The 2020 Coalition to Transform Advanced Care Summit will offer leaders and advocates the chance to connect and share best practices that they can bring back to their own communities. The Summit will tackle pressing issues in serious illness care through the lens of health equity. Sessions include:

  • building community with caring and practical engagement,
  • recognizing and supporting the needs of diverse family caregivers,
  • tackling inequity in health through community health worker engagement,
  • faith leaders partnering to support caregivers.
Click here to subscribe to health enews, a news service of Advocate Aurora Health, which offers breaking health stories, weight loss tips, exercise advice, the latest treatment options and much more.
Faith and Health Partnerships | AdvocateAuroraHealth

Copyright 2020. All Rights Reserved.