Dallas County Records 5 More Deaths From Flu

So far this flu season, there have been 130 hospitalized cases in Pueblo. A 3-year-old who did not receive a flu shot has died in the San Antonio area. The previous week there were seven reported deaths.

State officials have seen a spike in cases a little earlier than is typical.

Flu symptoms are the same regardless of what strain you have but H3N2 cases have been reported as more severe in recent years.

Making matters worse, H3N2 has been mutating as it spreads across the country, possibly making it more resistant to this season's vaccine. Both CDC and MDH have notified medical providers of the importance of prescribing antivirals during this flu season.

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On Monday, the department said that one person - a 56-year-old woman - had died of the flu in the county. Unity Point Finley Hospital in Dubuque and Mercy Medical Centers in Dubuque and Dyersville are restricting visitation from all children under 14 and anyone with flu-like symptoms. Austin's emergency rooms have also seen an influx of flu patients.

If that happens, Dr. Werker says this flu season could be similar to past year.

A quadrivalent recombinant influenza vaccine is new for the 2017-2018 flu season.

"H3 is more likely to lead to hospitalization or even death", Berg said. Complications are less common and most people will recover within a week. More than 11,000 people have developed the flu this season as of January 6 and about a third of those people have been hospitalized.

"If you've already lost some of your health immunity due to having contracted flu one time, you certainly do not need to contract a second strain and that's the benefit of taking the vaccine", she said.

Local media outlets report Carmel Christian School in Matthews canceled classes Thursday and Friday after reports of a flu-like outbreak which has affected more than 160 students. Compared to the 2016-2017 flu season, there were 1,109 total cases and 275 weekly cases reported for the same time period a year ago.

Folk said there are two possible reasons for the spike.

She said this year's vaccine protects patients against three or four strains. "While it's important that these individuals get the flu vaccine, it's equally important that young and healthy Iowans be vaccinated so they don't spread the flu to others who may be at higher risk".

Wayne State University recently won two flu vaccination challenges aimed at increasing vaccination rates.

  • Joanne Flowers