Flu Season is Coming, Are You Ready?

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Overnight, the Center for Disease Control reported 23 states, including the Carolinas, have widespread flu activity. Influenza-like illness is widespread across the state.

A spike in flu cases during the holidays is not unusual. According to a news release from the DPH, flu season typically lasts until May and its peak times are usually the first months of the new year.

In the 2014-15 flu season, which resulted in a recent high of 97 fatalities, there were around 600 cases and no fatalities at this point.

The CDC advises everyone older than six months of age get the flu shot if they aren't allergic. "And our flu numbers are very much mirroring that pattern".

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Infection with the flu virus can cause fever, headache, cough, sore throat, runny nose, sneezing and body aches. While health officials recommend everyone receive a flu shot, older people, young children, pregnant women and people with certain health conditions are more vulnerable to complications. However, people with life-threatening allergies to the flu vaccine or its ingredients (which include gelatin, antibiotics, or other ingredients) can not or may require a different strain of the shot.

To locate a flu shot clinic near you, visit 2-1-1 Arizona or call 211 within Arizona or toll free 1-877-211-8661 from anywhere.

Patients in the central San Joaquin Valley have tested positive for influenza A and B. Influenza A is the more common strain, but the Valley is seeing more of influenza B than in other regions of the country, Bergen said.

"The supply of Trivalent Influenza vaccine is expected this week and will be available for distribution on Friday 29th December, pending cold chain clearance". Vaccinations are available at Kentucky's local health departments, pharmacies, and medical providers.

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The cost of the vaccine is $10 for adults and children. Kentuckians are advised to call before arriving for a vaccination.

Twenty-five of the confirmed cases in DE stem from the influenza A (H3N2) strain, which officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say has so far been the predominant virus in the US this season.

H3N2 was the most common strain seen in Australia and the vaccine used there has a similar composition to the one being now used in the U.S. In previous years, the effectiveness rates of flu shots has been between 40 to 60 percent.

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