Flu season also causing issues for dogs

25 January, 2018, 01:58 | Author: Clint Gray
  • Ohio County elementary student dies from the flu

At least 85 adults and 30 children have died from this season's flu outbreak.

DHHS obtains death data through death certificates and according to the state, delays in the reporting of deaths "may cause the number of reported (pneumonia/flu) deaths to vary considerably each week".

Despite the apparent decline, 197 additional hospitalized influenza cases were reported last week, which puts the total number of hospitalizations since the beginning of the season at 2,366. The CDC recommends that people get a flu vaccine by the end of October, though getting vaccinated later can still be beneficial, even into January or later.

The flu can be especially risky for people over the age of 65, pregnant women, young children and anyone with asthma, diabetes and some other chronic medical conditions.

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"It's probably the worst we've seen in 10 years", Clarence Sullivan, the owner of Pharmacy Shop in Lexington said. The cabinet is encouraging healthy individuals over 6 months old to get the flu vaccine. "A cough is something we see all the time", she said.

Unlike human influenza, canine flu is not now found everywhere in the United States.

Seniors are more likely to get the flu shot; 59% of those over 55 years of age say they have already received the flu shot, while only a third of that age group (33%) say they don't plan on getting the vaccine at all. Symptoms include: fever, feverish chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and tiredness.

Graves Gilbert Clinic is offering flu vaccines for free with insurance or for $45 without insurance, according to a joint email sent from Juliana Pace, practice manager at Graves Gilbert, and Steve Rey, director of intramural recreational sports.

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This particular strain of the flu virus (H3N2) that has infected many USA citizens, is known for its ability to avoid protection supplied by vaccinations. Now, in a new study published in the journal Science, researchers from the University of California Los Angeles have developed a new flu vaccine candidate that could potentially be much more effective than the current vaccine.

Out of every 100,000 hospitalizations in the U.S., 22.7 of them were for the flu during the first week of January, according to the CDC.

"In addition to the seasonal flu vaccine, everyday preventive actions such as staying away from sick people and washing your hands helps to protect you against the flu", Skaggs said. And if you've suffered from one strain, you're still susceptible to infection from another, says Dr. Bouvier.

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