Summit County Public Health urges residents to get a flu vaccine

"We ultimately want a playing deck of all these versions of the flu", he explained. Dr. Gerson agreed that the vaccine is working, but people still need to get it. Expectant mothers should be vaccinated during pregnancy to protect themselves and pass protection on to their unborn babies. 19 people aged 5 to 24 have been hospitalized for the flu this season, while at this point past year only one person in that age range had needed hospitalization. Deaths from flu-related complications and hospitalizations among children and the elderly remain high.

At this rate, the current flu season will be the deadliest of the decade, as 2014-15 saw 157 flu-related deaths.

Influenza is a highly contagious viral infection and is more severe than the common cold. At least 20 children have reportedly died from the virus since late 2016.

The season has still not reached its peak, officials say, and getting vaccinated for the flu is still recommended. "Even if the dominant strain accounts for 50 percent [of the infections] in a given season, that leaves half of all strains not now picked up".

According to the release, this season's flu has been hitting children, teenagers and young adults particularly hard.




There's been a slight increase this last week of people getting flu shots from the Porter and Lake counties health departments, thanks to media coverage of flu cases increasing, county officials said.

Kevin Hall with Lexington-Fayette County Health Department says that the warmer weather may help slow the spread of the virus. Flu vaccine is also widely available across Tennessee from a number of providers including pharmacies, grocery store clinics and primary care providers.

With flu season in full swing in Meigs County and around the region and state, the flu shot remains the primary route of prevention.

No matter what strain of flu you may have, the recommendation is the same: stay home from work or school if you're sick so you don't spread germs, wash your hands frequently, and cover your cough.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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