Guest column: Arizona sees 758 percent increase in flu activity

03 Enero, 2018, 00:43 | Author: Earnest Bishop
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Hospitalizations in Montgomery County jumped 50 percent during December 17 to December 23 compared to the week before.

"From what we are monitoring, activity is increasing in Madison County".

'As far as past seasons where H3N2 has been predominant, there have been more hospitalizations and complications with it, ' said Texas Health and Human Services Commission spokeswoman Lara Anton.

So far, 512 flu-related hospitalizations have been reported to the CDC this year. Only time will tell where the number of cases will take us from here, but, we're off to a very foreboding start. "It's activity common for this time of year", Yeager said. And, it is not too late!

Is the man flu real?

'There is not much we can do on a state level, ' said Anton, 'it's an every-year epidemic'.

The vaccine may be mismatched for the prominent strains spreading this year, according to a report published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The same strain was primarily responsible for sickening more than 1,000 people in Australia, where health officials estimated that vaccines only prevented some 10 percent of strains.

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Flu season lasts from October to May. Vaccine effectiveness against other flu viruses (i.e., H1N1 or B viruses) was‎ higher. Even though the vaccine is not ideal, and is not a guarantee against all flu-like illnesses, what is true is that it will offer protection and it will lessen the course of the disease, even if you or your child contract influenza.

"A small number of hospital beds have been closed to admission as a precaution".

Health Information Manager Amy Yeager, of the Madison County Health Department, said after consulting with others in the office, the consensus is that flu cases are up, but are nothing out of the ordinary. It is tracked by emergency room visits, and thermometer sales at local drug stores is also tracked to gauge illness in the region.

Signs are posted throughout Allina Health's hospitals and clinics that remind patients to wash their hands and cover their cough with boxes of face masks and hand sanitizer at each entrance. People can find a place to get vaccinated at vaccinefinder.org.

The Greater Dayton Area Hospital Association announced last week that adult, short-term acute care hospitals has implemented restrictions in an effort to minimize the spread of respiratory infections to hospital patients, employees and community members.

Lastly, there are the heartbreaking stories emerging on social media of children who are dying from the flu. "Children are particularly likely to carry viruses since they are heavily exposed in the school setting".

Flu symptoms can include: a fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, runny or stuffy nose, headaches and fatigue.

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