Officials report 7 more flu deaths in NC; 20 for the season

05 January, 2018, 15:15 | Author: Hope Soto
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Due to a report out of Australia, some news agencies are saying that this season's flu vaccine is only 10 percent effective. That represented the highest level of flu-related deaths since DHHS began providing victim totals in 2008. Up to half of the children who die from flu have no known medical condition that would have put them at higher risk.

Residents can still get the flu vaccine at hospitals, clinics and most pharmacies. And it's one of 36 states where flu activity is considered geographically widespread.

They say influenza-like illness activity is double what it was at this time a year ago with the current flu season not yet at its peak. Many people do not visit the doctor when ill and doctors should not be expected to run tests on all patients exhibiting influenza-like symptoms, state health officials said. In the same time previous year, 140 cases were reported.

Nationally, flu season has arrived stronger than projected, according to federal health officials. Dukes says it isn't too late to get a shot since flu season can run well into the spring in Oklahoma.

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Experts said flu season in Southwest Florida ends around April.

Dr. Christopher Ohl, infectious disease expert at Wake Forest Baptist, said there has been "a significant increase in influenza and influenza-like illness in both adults and children" over the past two weeks.

Infectious Disease Specialist with the Missoula County Health Department, Pam Whitney, said one specific strain of the flu has been hard to contain.

Stay home from work if you are sick and cover your mouth when you cough with your sleeve or a tissue.

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