Because of the flu season which has come on earlier and more aggressive than years past Beaumont has chose to ban children under 13 from visiting all eight of their hospitals.
It also reported that 1,200 people had tested positive for the flu, a number that experts say is likely much higher.
The 2017-18 flu season nationally is looking similar to what was seen during the 2014-15 flu season, which at the time was the most severe flu season in recent years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC's latest report said that the United States is officially in a flu epidemic.
Activity levels are based on the percent of outpatient visits in a state due to influenza-like illness (ILI) and are compared with the average percent of ILI visits that occur during weeks with little or no influenza virus circulation. The OSDH wants to remind Oklahomans that everyone is at risk for influenza and the flu vaccination is recommended for anyone 6 months of age and older. While it is possible that flu season peaked around the holidays and illnesses will gradually decline, it is also possible that the flu season could get even worse in 2018 before it gets better.
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"We are seeing small percentages of them now but the prominent b strain usually is a later appearing strain in the flu season so there is still time to protect that", explained Levine.
Harris said 30 out of the 67 Alabama counties have been hit hard by the flu this year.
At this point, 80 percent of reported flu cases are this more severe strain, according to the CDC.
Seventeen flu-related deaths is drastically higher compared to previous year at this time when Manitoba health reported one death. "There's a sense across the country that a lot is happening with flu". "We are really urging people to get the flu vaccine", Sutfin said. "The other hypothesis could be that the vaccine wasn't a good mesh this year". Studies show that antiviral drugs work best against the flu if started within two days of getting sick. The vaccine seems to very effective for the strain that's most prevalent in the state right now, A (H3).