Peak Flu Season Is Coming Up, And Kids Are Especially At Risk

Posted January 11, 2019

Kane County health officials are urging people to get flu shots after a 3-year-old girl died from flu-related complications last month at an Aurora hospital.

The South-West Regional Health Authority (SWRHA) has maintained that all procedures were followed in the treatment of a patient at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the San Fernando General Hospital, who died from swine flu.

For reasons of medical privacy, the department will not be releasing additional information.

"Everyone older than six months of age, and able to be vaccinated, should get a flu shot", says Health Commissioner, Eric Zgodzinski.

As we dive into winter, the best way to ensure you're protected is to get the influenza shot if you haven't already.

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"If you are sick with flu-like symptoms - fever, shaking, chills, shivering, cough - make sure you are not exposing other people", he said. The 74-year-old man was vaccinated but the 64-year-old man was not, the county said. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the flu has already spread in nearly half of the country, with 19 states reporting high levels of influenza-like illness activity.

Some ways to prevent getting the flu include getting the vaccine, washing your hands often and getting a lot of rest during flu season.

Overall, just over 2,000 cases of the flu have been reported so far this season, which fell dramatically from more than 10,300 by this time a year ago.

Monto: Antiviral medications are generally underutilized but are very effective in treating flu symptoms.

Children less than two years old and adults older than 65.

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Many medical clinics and pharmacies offer flu shots.

"We can calculate that if about half the people exposed to the flu couldn't get infected and pass it on because they're immune, for example, the virus wouldn't be able to spread and the epidemic would stop".

"We're definitely seeing the H1N1 virus in both adults and children this year".

Q: How do you and your team measure how well the vaccine is protecting people against the flu in a given year?

There have been 11 deaths reported this flu season compared to 91 at this point during the 2017-18 season.

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"So we would like everybody who's eligible to get the vaccine", said Russell, noting that it takes about two weeks for antibodies induced by the shot to come into full effect. However, the flu virus can be particularly risky for young children, seniors, pregnant women and people with compromised immune systems.