Cold and Flu Season Takes Nasty Turn In Bloomington-Normal

Ill boy lying in bed. sad child with fever and ice bag on head

Ill boy lying in bed. sad child with fever and ice bag on head

The state numbers are especially higher during the current flu season, with 92 flu-associated hospitalizations during the week of December 2 and 257 total flu hospitalizations since the start of the flu season, compared to past year at this time when there were 19 flu-associated hospitalizations and only 83 for the season.

The CDC reports that vaccinations reduce the risk of illness by 40 to 60 percent among the overall populations during flu season.

Flu season usually lasts through early summer.

Widespread activity is the highest level of flu activity.

The Department of Public Health and El Paso Fire Department held a vaccine clinic on Wednesday, Feb. 15 at the EPFD's Safety and Health Outreach Center, 5415 Trowbridge Drive.

Maurer says the best ways to prevent the spread of the virus is to get a flu shot and wash your hands.

"The influenza vaccine protects against multiple strains of flu", said Stacey Anderson, who works for the DPHHS Communicable Disease Epidemiology section. Keep your hands clean by washing.

Beyond getting a flu shot, there are other things we can do for ourselves and for family, friends, co-workers and the community.

For two and three-year-old children the vaccine - which is a quick, safe and completely pain-free nasal spray - will be given at their local GP surgery.

Burton said that's not good for avoiding flu and infections, as the germs from the facial tissue are transferred to the inside of the pocket or the sleeve, and can be picked up again by touching those places afterwards.

Government officials contend the viruses in flu shots are killed during the production of a vaccine, which means they can not cause infection.

Last week, a Yukon elementary school was forced to close its doors after 115 students and 10 teachers called in sick.

Flu symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, headache, chills and muscle aches. "This is a tragic reminder that the flu still kills", said county public health official Cameron Kaiser, MD, in a statement.

It sounds very simple, she said, but everyone should dispose of all used tissues immediately after using them.

While you can't predict how the flu season will go, Thompson said so far this season is looking to be pretty serious.

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