"It's terribly important for the public to understand that the best protection we have is the seasonal flu shot".
Healthy youngsters who died from their flu infections were more likely than peers who had underlying medical conditions to be younger, less vaccinated, die before hospital admission, and have shorter illness durations. Swine flu, which swept the globe in 2009 and 2010, sickened 60.8 million Americans, hospitalized 274,304 and killed 12,469, according to CDC data.
Through the end of December, ILI was tracking very closely with the 2014-2015 and 2012-2013 seasons, she added. It's a wake-up call about how severe influenza can be, and why we can never let down our guard, ' Schuchat said.
While flu or pneumonia was listed on 10.1% of death certificates for the week, Dr. Schuchat said deaths probably have not peaked.
"Hopefully the B strain we are shifting to is covered in the vaccine", Schulz said.
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"This is a hard season and we can't predict how much longer the intense flu activity will last", CDC acting director Dr. Anne Schuchat told NBC News. In Oregon and Hawaii, flu is occurring at a more limited regional level, rather than statewide.
When asked what WMU students could do in order to prevent the spread of the H3N2 flu virus, Dr. Marshall offered a variety of suggestions.
Sophomore discipleship ministry major Madison Hyde said she could personally see the difference in the flu this season. Each year, they're prepared for when flu season rolls around.
Here in Riverside County, deaths have almost doubled, bringing the deaths of people under the age of 64 who've died of flu related illness to 20. Specifically, he cited "a more scientific process" for choosing the strains in the vaccine, including "understanding the evolution of the virus and using computational tools to predict what flu strains are coming".
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Flu shots cost $30 during its regular hours of operation Monday-Thursday. "We're getting used to it", Marchetti said.
The predominant flu strain this season, H3N2, typically leads to more illnesses and deaths.
Earlier this week, the Maryland Department of Health confirmed the first influenza-associated pediatric death in the state for this flu season.
Flu symptoms can be similar to a less-serious illness like the common cold, ranging from a sore throat and runny nose to vomiting, body aches, fevers, cough and extreme tiredness.
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