No, it's not too late to get a flu shot

12 January, 2018, 03:24 | Author: Clint Gray
  • It's flu season and in West Michigan, flu cases are on the rise

And among the 54 jurisdictions in the flu surveillance system (every state plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands), 50 reported "regional" or "widespread" flu activity at the end of a year ago.

Officials said they won't be able to determine the effectiveness of the current flu shot until February, but they're encouraging everyone over six months of age to get vaccinated.

Flu season is now at its peak in California, causing medicine shortage, packed emergency rooms, and an alarming death toll nine times higher than the last seasonal epidemic. They've had consistent reports of flu, sinus infections and bronchitis. "Flu activity is increasing throughout our area".

Flu is widespread in 46 nations, including California, according to the newest reports to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

According to the California Department of Public Health, influenza is now widespread throughout the state, with Influenza A (H3N2) viruses predominating this season.

Individuals in the high-risk group that experience symptoms of flu, should contact their health care provider early in the illness.

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Canada's flu shot was less effective than usual this year, the National Post reported.

Dr. Neelakanta said the best line of defense, is still the flu vaccine.

Symptoms include sudden onset of fever, headache, extreme fatigue, dry cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose and muscle aches. In the 2013-2014 flu season, the CDC reported that 90 percent of children who died did not receive the vaccine.

Annual influenza vaccination is recommended for everyone 6 months of age or older.

Health officials also recommend people follow good personal hygiene habits to prevent spreading germs to others. Second, don't go to work sick.

Wash your hands often with soap and water.

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Flu vaccines are still available in Solano County and it is not too late to get vaccinated. The state says the reason deaths of those under 65 are the only ones reportable as flu deaths is because statistically many older patients have other health issues.

However, H3N2 cases tend to be more severe than other strains and people are more likely to develop serious complications, such as pneumonia and even death, he says.

Two mutated strains are the root cause of the rise in cases - a superior influenza A strain named H3N2 which primarily targets the elderly, and a lesser B strain named B/Yamagata that affects adults and children.

The agency said 614,363 vaccines have been administered in the county since the beginning of the season.

"Stay home if you're sick", said Dr. McGee.

California health officials urged those with flu-like symptoms to stay home, rest, cover their coughs and seek medical assistance for more severe symptoms including chest pain, troubled breathing and dehydration.

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