State of Georgia ranks #1 as sickest for flu

10 February, 2018, 06:44 | Author: Katrina Soto
  • CDC: US flu levels now rival 2009 swine flu

Despite hopes the nation would see the flu epidemic drop off by now, the number of severe cases only continues to increase, US health officials said in a somber telephone conference Friday. The flu season is now in its 11th week, and it is sometimes hard to determine when it has reached its peak.

Officials also confirmed the flu is still considered widespread in Puerto Rico and 48 states, and they expect the number of flu cases to remain elevated.

In the latest update, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 10 new child deaths and the highest flu hospitalization rate seen since the agency started keeping comparable records in 2010.

There were 40,414 deaths in the United States during the third week of 2018, the most recent data available, and 4064 were from pneumonia or influenza, according to the CDC data.

Mahan also says that if they have many confirmed cases, they will even go so far as to prevent visitors from bringing any outside food into the facility in order to keep the elderly safe from other peoples' germs. At least four other pandemics occurred, although less deadly, including the 1957 H2N2 Asian Flu, the 1968 H3N2 "Hong Kong Flu", the 1977 Russian Flu and the 2009 H1N1 Swine Flu.

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While there were no specifically new strains of the flu this year, the viruses ripping through the US are hard to control with the flu vaccine. This year's predominant flu strain, H3N2, is very good at quickly shape-shifting to elude vaccines and immune systems, so this year's flu vaccine, while helpful, is not as effective as those from previous years. "In general, we can expect a very similar influenza season in Canada compared to the USA but not exactly the same", Dr. Isaac Bogoch, clinical researcher at the Toronto General Hospital Research Institute told Global News.

The West Region of the state continues to have the largest number of total weekly laboratory-confirmed cases for Type A and B flu viruses - some 742 - as well as the total number of year-to-date confirmed cases - some 2,885. "We're seeing fewer specimens testing positive for flu, but that doesn't mean the flu is over here - we're definitely still in the thick of flu season". The flu shot will remain effective for roughly six months. "But if we stay vigilant and take steps to fight flu, we can reduce the risk of getting - and transmitting - it". People who develop flu-like symptoms should see a doctor right away.

With a lousy chance of being protected against H3N2 this year, why get the flu shot?

Influenza is a viral infection of the respiratory tract and is spread by droplets released when infected people cough or sneeze nearby or when people touch surfaces or objects contaminated with those infectious respiratory droplets.


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