What To Know About The Flu Virus As Season Ramps Up

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According to the Department for Public Health, of the thirty-six flu-related deaths reported so far this season, two were children.

The most common strain circulating this year is the H3N2 influenza A, which tends to hit the youngest and oldest people the hardest.

"Although influenza season usually peaks between December and February, flu activity can occur as late as May, which means it is not too late to get vaccinated".

Experts urge everyone 6 months of age and older get the flu shot, as it helps reduce the chance of illness from the flu and can also lessen the severity of the symptoms if you do get sick.

The flu virus is rapidly spreading across the country, causing more deaths and hospitalizations.

"These viruses are often linked to more severe illness, especially among children and people age 65 and over", Fitzgerald said. Doctors are not required in Texas to report cases of influenza.

That's still a worthwhile outcome, the doctor said.

It's no secret by now that the flu vaccine is not a good match with the H3N2 flu strain that is dominating the season.

Retail Sales Grew 0.4% in December
These so-called core retail sales are the most consistent with the consumer spending element of gross domestic product (GDP). Overall December sales - including automobiles, gasoline and restaurants - were up 5.5 percent from December 2016.

Harris said hospitals in almost half of Alabama counties are at 90 percent of their patient capacity.

"Yes, there might be concerns about one of the four elements, but at the end of the day there's still the other three and still a significant benefit to be had by getting a flu shot, even now".

We have seen an increase in the number of hospital visits around the state. Alcohol based gels are the next best thing if you don't have accessto soap and water. "It is generally less for H3N2 than it is for H1N1 or influenza B".

"All indications show that we are in the midst of the most intense weeks of flu season", DCHHS Interim Director Ganesh Shivamaiyer said in a press release. "They have no extra beds, they're seeing lots of ill patients with influenza-like illnesses or confirmed cases of flu", Carter said.

Flu symptoms can include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue.

For the first time this season, flu is widespread in every state in the continental United States, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention media briefing on Friday.

Most importantly, he says, people still need to get their flu shot.