Flu continues to spread throughout region, state, nation

Grant Boone
December 30, 2018

It went from local to regional flu activity in the past week.

There were four flu-related pediatric deaths reported to the CDC during the week ending December 22.

The Florida Department of Health said there have been 8 new outbreaks, making it a total of 37 so far across the state this flu season. Westchester is one of the counties with the highest increase in the number of flu cases.

Colorado health officials said the 2017-2018 flu season was one of the worst on record in Colorado. Evidently, Influenza A viruses have predominated the country since the beginning of October, but they are co-circulating the country with Influenza B viruses as well.

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According to the CDC, the flu virus was responsible for almost 79,000 deaths during the 2017-2018 flu season.

People with the flu often experience fever, chills, coughing, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and fatigue, according to the CDC.

Flu complications, such as pneumonia, can result in hospitalization or even death. For adults ages 18 years and older, flu vaccination rates rose from 38.5% to 44.9%. Everyone 6 months and older are recommended to get the annual flu vaccine, especially those who are more vulnerable or at high risk. As long as flu is circulating in the area where you live, it is not too late to get vaccinated.

CBS News chief medical correspondent Dr. Jonathan LaPook told "CBS This Morning" on Friday this year's vaccine is about 40 percent effective, which is on par with last year's vaccine, and that the best chance of avoiding the virus is to get vaccinated.

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