An Early….and Tough….Flu Season in Beatrice Area

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Canada's flu shot was less effective than usual this year, said the National Post.

In Dallas County, 18 flu-related deaths have been reported this season, according to WFAA.

It says one adult between the ages of 50 to 64 died at some point between October first through December 30th.

The flu has also taken a toll on kids, with 195 people under age 18 admitted to hospital as of December 30.

He added that both children and pregnant women are among those at higher risk due to the flu, as are people over the age of 63.

A syringe contains the flu vaccine at Tri City Health Partnership, a free health clinic in St. Charles that provides services for those who are uninsured or underinsured. And hospital patients are asked to have no more than two visitors at a time.

Getting a flu shot is the best preventative measure and it's never too late, Scherzer added.

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The last time they needed an extended treatment area was during the 2009 flu pandemic. "Public health is our first priority, and I strongly encourage community members to get vaccinated and help prevent the spread of the flu".

Echoing the hand-washing theme is Tom Schlueter, public information officer for the Kane County Health Department.

If you have the flu, it's important to isolate yourself.

Schneider said influenza is a very common viral infection, that for most people, just causes fatigue, body aches, a low-grade fever and other minor symptoms for a few days.

"Even though we can't cure the flu, medications are available that can be taken that will diminish the severity and duration of the flu symptom", said Ruis.

Harding said the main reason for the rough flu season stems from the Centers for Disease Control missing the mark on the vaccine to combat the current strain. Some people, especially young children and people with weakened immune systems, might be able to infect others with flu viruses for an even longer time.

"It's safe to say that we are now experiencing a flu outbreak and these three voluntarily reported flu-related deaths reflect that", said Chief Epidemiologist Russell Jones. Rodriguez explained that this can happen because the influenza virus is constantly evolving, presenting a moving target for vaccine makers. However, some have chronic health problems and the flu can lead to complications ranging from moderate to life-threatening.

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