May 20, 2018

This Flu Season, Don't Forget About Tamiflu

15 January 2018, 01:09 | Darrell Baldwin

Health officials: 15 deaths, 'high level' of hospitalizations reported from flu

Flu epidemic is crippling America - particularly kids: Rate of under-fives hospitalized with deadly H3N2 has DOUBLED in just one week - as CDC warns new viral strains are emerging

The flu is raging across Oregon, and two children have already died in the last month, according to the Oregon Health Authority.

According to the DOH, flu activity is considered "widespread" in the state, with flu activity increasing through all of January 6, 18 deaths were considered "influenza-associated".

According to the latest data from Manitoba Health, 17 people have died from outcomes associated with influenza since the start of the 2017-2018 season, nearly double the number of deaths from the previous week.

Jernigan characterized the current flu season as "on the severe side", but said it does not appear to be as severe as the 2014/2015 flu season, which was also driven by an H3N2 virus.

"It's very important that residents call their health care provider as soon as possible if they're experiencing flu symptoms to determine if antiviral drugs should be prescribed", Hacker said.

She said new flu vaccine stock was now available at the Boots warehouse for their pharmacies to re-stock.

Flu season is here.

Honeycutt said flu can strike anytime throughout the year, but most cases occur between October and April. This year, the peak has been 193 hospitalizations. Those with a cold are more likely to have a runny or stuff nose and the cold generally does not result in serous health problems. Australia - whose experience USA public health officials follow closely in making their flu forecasts, in part because Australia's winter is our summer - reported a record-high number of confirmed flu cases in 2017. This helps improve the effectiveness of flu vaccines used in the United States. More than half of those patients have been diagnosed with influenza, Central Health said Friday. "Antivirals can reduce severity of illness and are recommended for those at high-risk for flu complications: the elderly, children, pregnant women, and persons with chronic medical conditions". "So even if you get the flu, it will be a much more mild case of the flu than what you would have gotten".

If a child shows severe symptoms, they should be taken to a pediatrician and then the emergency room if necessary, doctors say.

Those with a fever should stay home from work or school, wash their hands frequently, consider seeking anti-viral treatments and cover their mouths with their sleeves when they sneeze or cough. It is one of the four strains in the flu vaccine, but it's mutating, making it hard to vaccinate against.

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