Flu season could be the worst in almost a decade

Frederick Owens
December 8, 2017

Experts say that 24 people had to be hospitalized within the last week due to the virus, bringing the total number of hospitalizations to 135. "We generally start seeing an increase about now, and we'll gradually see more as time goes on".

The number of lab-confirmed cases is up to 304, up more than 100 from last week.

Even if you don't have a regular health care provider, the flu vaccine is available in many settings. Flu reporting is largely voluntary and often inconsistent, Bennett said, so the weekly surveillance reports are "just a snapshot" that, examined over time, reveal seasonal trends.

"We have probably given an excessive 300 flu shots so far and we still have flu shots", Sheila Hubenka, a TB charge nurse with the health district said. The flu vaccine changes each year in anticipation of the strains mostly likely to predominate in the season ahead.

But healthcare providers say you should still get the flu shot.

Doctors still want you to get the shot, though. "Getting it during the holiday season is even worse", said Chakravarty.

Kathryn Pool shares why every senior should get an annual flu vaccination. "Once it's here, it'll spread like a brushfire".

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Protecting yourself from this potentially deadly virus is surprisingly simple. Flannery said highest-risk patients are the elderly, pregnant women and infants, and people who have underlying conditions, such as lung or heart conditions. Flu related complications can include pneumonia and dehydration.

"It hits you like a freight train", she said. He says the best way to avoid the flu is to get immunized with a flu shot. Qualifying children and adolescents can receive flu vaccine provided by the Texas Vaccines for Children program. More than 148 million doses have been distributed already.

After receiving vaccine donations from civic organizations, the CDC on Friday last week announced the plan to administer government-funded vaccines to infants born after January 1 who are older than 12 months after January 1 next year.

Fortunately, no other deaths have been reported in connection with the flu. Stay home and rest, away from others. Covering your mouth when you're coughing or sneezing.

"Good hand washing and sanitizing after you touch an area that may be contaminated". Drink plenty of fluids. Antiviral drugs may be prescribed to treat the flu.

"Our vaccine is the same as the one used in Australia", said Lynnette Brammer, an epidemiologist in the influenza division of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

This story appears through a media sharing agreement with Bangor Daily News.

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