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What To Know About The Flu Virus As Season Ramps Up

13 January 2018

According to OH health officials, two boys have died in the state due to the flu.

The "H3" strain of the flu is much more serious, especially for the elderly and children.

On the same scale, there have been 33 outbreaks in long-term health facilities, in comparison with only nine past year.

CDC Director Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald said influenza type A, H3N2 strain has been the most common form of flu this season. "The 2017 vaccine that people are getting now has the same H3N2 strain as the 2016 vaccine, so this could be another hard year if this season is dominated by H3N2 viruses again".

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During this flu season there have already been 130 confirmed influenza cases in the Helena area, according to Lewis and Clark Public Health.

According to the Department for Public Health, of the thirty-six flu-related deaths reported so far this season, two were children.

It's been a rough few weeks: Hospitals have set up tents to handle patient overflow. People are also socializing and going out more, so I think there's more exposure to flu.

Emergency rooms are crowded and ambulances are in high demand.

The infection could also lead to pneumonia and other complications, which is specific to Aussie flu, said pharmacist and Jakemans expert Marvin Munzu. 2014 represents the worst flu season in the past decade with 4,138 total cases.

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But he recommended anyone over age 65 or who regularly sees a doctor for a medical condition at least call their physician if they take sick to see about getting a prescription for Tamiflu.

About 155,000 could die in 21 days at the height of the flu outbreak, which includes the devastating Aussie virus.

There were 128 positive flu tests during the same period in 2016, health officials said.

"We encourage them to go to urgent care facilities, or try to get into community health centers, or try to get into your primary care provider", she says.

The data used by the researchers is laboratory confirmed, meaning that they have been confirmed to be the virus that causes the flu - many other studies use only "influenza-like" illness data, which is estimated to be flu virus only 30 per cent of the time.

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Health Minister John Haggie says a potentially less-than-perfect flu vaccine doesn't mean people should skip their flu vaccine this year.

What To Know About The Flu Virus As Season Ramps Up