Flu cases continue to climb

Flu cases continue to climb

Flu cases continue to climb

Sheena Moore administers flu shot at a Suffolk County clinic in Great River, Saturday, Feb. 10, 2018. "Facilities that are experiencing high rates of flu should ensure that they are cleaning and disinfecting regularly and that ill individuals are isolated to help prevent additional cases of the flu".

The flu season is sticking around another nine weeks.

The two vaccines each contain four flu strains and are similar, except that the southern hemisphere vaccine contains the Singapore H3N2-like strain instead of the Hong Kong H3N2-like strain found in the northern hemisphere vaccine.

"Right now, we're focused on one class of antiviral drug, but we should be looking at combination therapies and other modalities, such as host-directed therapies", said Timothy Uyeki, MD, of the CDC in Atlanta.

Although several deaths have been reported in the state, health officials are warning the flu outbreak has still not reached its peak.

Malas says an effective preventative measure to stop the flu is isolation. CDC Acting Director Ann Schuchat said the agency doesn't require national reporting of flu deaths in adults. Most insurance plans cover flu shots with no copay.

"The flu is more than just 'a bad cold.' It's a serious respiratory illness that's easily spread from person to person, usually when the person with the flu coughs or sneezes", Dr.

Epidemiologists and virus experts don't have an explanation yet for why the flu this season has been worse than usual, Schuchat said.

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For the past five years, the flu season has lasted between 11 and 20 weeks, she said.

"The thing about an infectious disease like this - as long as there is a susceptible host and an opportunity for transmission, you could continue to have flu season", Dr. Schulz said. The recommendation to not use the nasal spray flu vaccine was renewed for the second year. They also noted that even with reduced vaccine effectiveness, vaccination may still prevent some flu illnesses, medical visits and hospitalizations.

The decision came during an especially strong flu season, with rates of the virus approaching levels we haven't seen in nearly a decade.

An already aggressive flu season is becoming more challenging.

As is the case every season, this year's influenza vaccine formulation has coverage of strains of both type A and B influenza.

Flu shots cost $30 during its regular hours of operation Monday-Thursday.

Besides getting the flu vaccine and washing your hands, Benard said the best way to avoid getting sick is to stay away from people who have the flu.

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