1st flu-related child death reported in New Jersey

As flu outbreak numbers rise, the HSE says it's not too late to get your vaccine

Flu activity begins to spike across country

Public Health won't consider the flu season to be active until that threshold has been crossed for two straight weeks.

CDC officials say there were 510 confirmed influenza cases through January 5 - down from 768 during the same time period in 2017-2018.

The symptoms are similar to seasonal flu symptoms.

"CDC monitors flu viruses because changes can impact the effectiveness of flu vaccine".

Flu activity is on the rise across the US, the CDC reports, and New York City is experiencing high increases.

Brent Lewis via Getty ImagesNeedles sit on the counter waiting to be prepared to administer the annual flu vaccination at Crawford Kids Clinic in Aurora, Colorado.

Flu season, which began back in October, has officially arrived in Southwest Florida with more than 310 cases confirmed during the week of December 23, according to Lee Health.

"The dominant virus is different from a year ago, which is excellent". For instance, in 2016-17, there were only 128 cases through the same time period and 41 in 2015-16.

Despite the spike in cases, this is the typical pattern seen, and is on par with what was seen a year ago as well, said Khan. "We continue to recommend community members get their flu shot".

Each season typically sees one of the strains dominate and H3N2 historically has been considered the nastier of the two strains.

There have been high rates of children hospitalized across the country this year.

This year, for much the same reason, we are repeating that advice.

Another Saskatchewan life has been lost due to influenza, bringing the province's total number of flu-related deaths to six since September 1, 2018. "Influenza is always unsafe", Schaffner said. "This year's vaccine is a good match for circulating strains and it is not too late to get the vaccine", he said.

The influenza immunization is recommended for everyone age 6 months and older (if there are no medical conditions that discourage it.) For those who absolutely can not tolerate hypodermic needles, there is a jet injector available which uses a high pressure narrow stream of vaccine to penetrate the skin using compressed gas or springs. The CDC states some individuals may have vomiting and diarrhea, though these symptoms are more common in children than adults.

Flu outbreaks. Early detection and early response are key to preventing the spread of any disease, including the flu. The CDC's Twitter account is also a helpful resource to stay on top of the latest information about this year's flu. "There's plenty of vaccines out there, most doctor's offices have some and if not you can go to any pharmacy to receive one".

"That's likely to happen next week", Melnick said.

The HSE is urging all people in at-risk groups for the flu to get vaccinated if they have not done so already. "This is called 'herd immunity, '" he explained. Most cases occurred in people under age 65.

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