Counties to expand flu prevention amid record-setting season

Counties to expand flu prevention amid record-setting season

Flu-related hospitalizations rose to about 60 people out of every 100,000 in the fifth week of 2018, the CDC said Friday in its weekly surveillance report.

This year's flu season has been dominated by H3N2, a particularly nasty strain which is linked to more severe illnesses, especially among adults over the age of 65 and children younger than 5.

They say the flu season isn't over and the respiratory infection could still strike at any time.

No details were immediately released about the latest pediatric flu fatality.

Dr. Carol Smith, Commissioner of Health and Mental Health, Ulster County Department of Health and President, NYSACHO said, "NYSACHO fully supports the Governor's and New York State DOH's initiative to increase the numbers of our citizens who are vaccinated against the flu".

There are early indications, including data from Australia and Canada, that vaccination against H3N2 was less effective than usual this year, in the range of 10% to 17%, instead of the usual 30% or so.

"Overall hospitalizations are now significantly higher than what we've seen for this time of year since our current tracking system began nearly a decade ago, in 2010", Schuchat said.

That different type of the virus cannot only infect people who have managed to avoid the flu so far this season, but it can also re-infect those who came down with Influenza A earlier in the season - a cruel double whammy.

Although the majority of flu-related deaths in IN have occurred in individuals age 65 and older, almost 83 percent of the influenza-like illnesses reported to ISDH this year involve individuals age 24 and younger, according to the ISDH.

And many doctors say the flu season hasn't peaked yet.




Get a flu shot. Scientists expect the flu to be most risky among small children and the elderly, not so much among the working-age healthy population.

"We had already made the vaccine for this flu season".

"There is a lot of fear and alarm about this flu season", Schuchat said.

The reporting of laboratory confirmed cases of flu to the state health department enables tracking of circulating viruses.

"We were hoping to have better news..." The flu shot will remain effective for roughly six months.

Plus, your getting the flu shot means better protection for the most vulnerable people: children and the elderly.

People are also recommended to avoid crowds, wash hands often, avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth, clean and disinfect surfaces and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Individuals who are experiencing flu-like symptoms are urged to contact their physician or visit an urgent care facility to keep emergency rooms available for people who are critically ill. Flu infection can continue up to 24 hours after the fever breaks without the help of a fever-reducing medication.

It gets worse. The death toll in future weeks is expected to grow even higher because flu activity is still rising, and the number of deaths follow the flu activity.

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