Flu season coming earlier than expected in Ohio

This year, the onslaught of a particularly deadly strain of the flu virus may lead to a harsher flu season than usual.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports only sporadic cases of the flu in Wyoming, but there are more each week, indicating that flu season is approaching. That's double the number compared to this time a year ago.

Some of us remember the days when shots, TB tests, and polio vaccine on sugar cubes were given at school, so it's not surprising to see parent's signing up their children to get their flu shots at school.

Deti cautions that the county data is often inaccurate because many people do not go to the doctor when they have the flu and those who do often don't get officially tested and diagnosed.

Health experts look to Australia to measure the effectiveness of the vaccine and the severity of the flu headed our way.

Flu season is expected to peak around Christmas.

More news: Senate Passes Historic Republican Tax Overhaul Bill

Flu is most unsafe for people over age 65, young children, pregnant women and people with certain health conditions such as asthma or heart disease.

New weekly statistics issued by Alberta Health Services show five Albertans who contracted the flu this season have died as of November 25, including the first case in Edmonton zone.

"However imperfect, though, current influenza vaccines remain a valuable public health tool, and it is always better to get vaccinated than not to get vaccinated", the paper said.

The regular flu shot comes in versions that protect against either three or four strains of influenza - including that problematic H3N2 strain, another Type A strain known as H1N1, and one or two strains of Type B flu.

By getting a shot of inactive flu strains, the body builds an immunity towards the strain which helps fight off the sickness. "It's especially important for the elderly as well as the very young". The self-pay cost of vaccines is $25 and the high-dose vaccine for people 65 or older cost is $55. Even at reduced effectiveness, flu vaccination prevents millions of illnesses and tens of thousands of flu-related hospitalizations each year. "The best flu vaccine is the one that you get".

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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