The number of cases of influenza, as well as hospitalizations and deaths due to the viral respiratory illness, continue to escalate in Canada, and infectious diseases experts say there's no telling how soon the seasonal scourge will reach its peak and begin to taper off.
"Just looking at the statewide data, I think it's fair to say there's been an increase", Butler said.
Whenever the H3N2 virus is circulating, it seems to impact seniors particularly hard and there are more outbreaks in long-term care facilities, Shahab said.
"The flu can make people really sick, and over the past few weeks there has been a dramatic rise in influenza activity across the state", said Dr. Kathy Lofy, health officer for Washington State Department of Health. "That's why there is an increase in flue cases in colder months, because people are indoors more".
Matt Scotten, a spokesman for the Indiana State Department of Health, wouldn't disclose where the flu deaths occurred but noted in an email that they were "distributed throughout the entire state and there have been no clusters to speak of". The shot takes about two weeks to kick in anyway.
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For the first time during the 2016-2017 season, flu activity is considered high in every region of the Garden State.
Prior to each flu season the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducts research into which strains are the most likely to circulate among the population. Get your flu vaccine! Although vaccination early in the season is recommended, it is never too late to get vaccinated and help protect yourself and others from the spread the virus.Public Health officials encourage residents to get their flu shot for protection and to help stop the spread of the influenza virus. Signs of swine flu in pigs can include fever, coughing (barking), sneezing, breathing difficulties, eye redness or inflammation, and not eating. Brooke Waycaster, RN, Clinical Manager of the Rutherford-Polk-McDowell Health District reports, "Getting your annual flu shot is the most important step in preventing the flu".
KDH said "adequate supplies" of flu vaccine are available this season. For all ages, including children age 6 months and older.
Contact your health-care provider or the Clinton County Health Department at 565-4848 if you have questions about flu or the flu vaccine.
People at risk of serious illness - like seniors, children, pregnant women and people with chronic health conditions - are strongly recommended to get the flu shot.
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