Months out of the country's deadliest influenza season for decades, public health professionals urge people to get their influenza conditions,…
Months out of the country’s deadliest influenza season for decades, public health professionals urge people to get their influenza conditions, including in Whatcom County where flu already makes people sick.
“It begins,” says Cindy Hollinsworth, Communicable Disease Manager for Whatcom County Health Department.
About 80,000 people in the United States died of the disease and its complications last flu season, told Robert Redfield, director of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Associated Press in September.
Influenza has not been so lethal since at least since the mid-1
970s, the AP reported.
It was estimated 900,000 hospital stays last winter, as the CDC called “record breaking”.
In Washington, 296 people died of influenza-related conditions, according to the Washington State Department of Health.
The state authority said thousands were more in hospital.
In Whatcom Cou nine, seven people died of flu-related conditions last flu season.
Influenza activity in the USA is low this autumn, but two laboratory confirmed cases were reported in the last week of Whatcom County.
Last season, flu-like diseases in the United States began to rise in November.
Outbreaks can occur as early as October and may be as late as May, although the flu usually increases between December and February, says CDC.
Now it’s time to protect yourself by getting an influenza vaccine, said public health officials.
“It’s that time of year again,” said Hollinsworth. “We should get it to protect ourselves and each other.”
The effectiveness of the vaccine varies from year to year, but public health professionals say it still offers the best protection.
Some groups of people – toddlers, pregnant women, those with chronic health conditions and people 65 years of age and older – are at higher risk of flu complications. While public health professionals call these groups to receive the flu, they said that everyone can correct the disease, including those who are healthy and healthy.
“Last year was one of the most difficult influenza seasons on record for Washington, and data just released shows only 61 percent of Washington children and teens were vaccinated. It’s important for us to protect each other this year,” says Kathy Lofy, Health Care Officer
So far this year, one child died from the flu. In total 183 died the last flu season, according to CDC.
And if you’re wondering, you can not get the flu from the flu shot.
“Influenza shots are made with inactivated (weakened) versions of the influenza virus, so that they stimulate the body to produce disease that strikes antibodies without causing infections, “says Hollinsworth.
“The influenza rejection will not give you flu, but you may experience mild symptoms such as body weight and low-grade fever associated with the flu because your body builds its immune response.”
Kie Relyea: 360-715-2234, @kierelyea  Do not know if you have cold or flu? One difference between the two is that the flu symptoms will hit you quickly, while cold symptoms come on gradually. Other signs you have flu are:
You may feel some or all the symptoms.
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Get vaccinated: It’s the best protection against the flu. The vaccine is recommended for those 6 months and older and especially for people at higher risk of complications from influenza due to age or medical condition. Pregnant women should be vaccinated, as they are at greater risk of complications, and the transmission of antibodies to the fetus helps to protect them as infants. It takes about two weeks after vaccination to reach full strength.
Find the vaccine: Call your doctor or pharmacist, or go online to cdc.gov/flu and enter your zip code in the “Flu vaccine finder” at the bottom right of the site.
Second Steps: Wash your hands frequently with soap and warm water. Avoid touching your face and eyes. Cover your mouth and nose while coughing. Stay home from work and school if you are ill. Stay away from those who are sick.
Source: Whatcom County Health Department