IN hospitals taking steps to prevent flu virus' spread

Flu season impacts hospital visitors

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reported our state's first child death for the 2017-2018 flu season on Thursday.

MINNEAPOLIS - 'Tis the season for getting sick and health officials say it's definitely making the rounds.

So far, there are 421 confirmed cases and two people have died in the season that began much earlier than previous years.

Vernon said the best defenses for fighting the flu are washing hands and receiving a flu shot.

The flu season is here in IL.

Influenza activity is widespread in Chautauqua County just as it is throughout the state and nation. Both hospitals advise anyone with flu-like symptoms not to visit hospitals.

Arnold says the IDPH is still recommending a flu shot, even though it may not be as effective as in years past.

In addition to the child, 11 adult flu-related deaths have been reported in North Carolina this season, which began October 1.

In the USA, influenza activity has significantly increased over recent weeks with the Influenza A (H3N2) virus strain predominating.

"The biggest thing about flu and the flu season is campaigning education in communities", said Dr. Manish Trivedi, Division Director of Infectious Disease at AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center.

Signs and symptoms of the flu include fever or feeling feverish, chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, fatigue and possibly vomiting and diarrhea. Also, the influenza vaccine effectiveness is generally lower against the A (H3N2) strain. Antivirals are especially important for at-risk patients, including: kids under 2 years old and adults over 65, pregnant women, people with asthma, and patients with weakened immune systems.

All anyone can do to protect themselves against this years fierce flu is to get vaccinated, cover coughs and sneezes, wash hands, get tested early, and stay home if they are sick.

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