Wednesday, 20 March, 2019


Flu Season in Full Swing in Pennsylvania

Woman with flu Modal Trigger Getty Images
Patty Aguilar | 05 January, 2019, 03:59

Last year was a really bad flu year. That strain has been circulating and was pandemic in 2009 and in 1918.

That virus is similar to the one that caused the flu pandemic in 2009, said Halperin, but hasn't been predominant since then - meaning that many people likely don't have immunity to it anymore. Several different strains of the flu were responsible for the deaths, including influenza A, influenza B, H1N1, H3N2, or a mix, according to the CDC.

Thankfully, health officials say there haven't been any pediatric deaths from the flu in Pennsylvania so far this season. When that strain predominated, almost 1 million Americans were hospitalized and 80,000 died. October through May, the division provides weekly updates and the chart shows that, for the past two flu seasons, North Carolina outpatient visits rise for people with influenza-related illnesses.

Martin says though cases in Minnesota are ramping up, it's still too early to tell if the strain is indeed H1N1. "Another thing is the vaccine might be a lot more effective this year than last year", Hu said. Children younger than 5 had the highest incidence of hospitalization, with 10 per 100,000 people.

Pharmacies like CVS on Davis Street in Scranton are busy as cold and flu season are underway.

Health experts say although vaccination is the number one prevention when it comes to protecting you and your family from the flu, it's not the only way to stay safe from it.

"She was a handsome little girl", her mother said.

Crystal White Shield lost her 6-year-old daughter, Allison Eaglespeaker, to the flu on December 1.

Doctors are recommending that people get the flu shot.

People who are very sick or who are at high risk of serious flu complications and experience flu-like symptoms should see a healthcare provider promptly for possible treatment with a flu antiviral drug, says Nordlund.

"Flu activity is expected to continue to increase over the coming weeks", she adds.

If you get the flu, antiviral drugs such as Tamiflu and Relenza can make your illness less severe.

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