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Young people dying from flu
11 January 2019, 05:37 | Rodolfo Wallace
HSE urges Limerick people to get vaccinated as flu cases are expected to increase in coming weeks
During the 2017-18 season, 185 children died of flu complications in the United States, officials from the Centers for Disease Control said.
Keri Zaleski, the McHenry County Department of Health's community information coordinator, said the flu often peaks in December and February, although activity can last as late as May.
Health officials are urging residents to get a flu vaccine, as it is the best way to protect yourself against the potentially risky virus.
There are tests that can confirm whether a patient has the flu or not but for the most part doctors will diagnose patients based on their symptoms.
Flu symptoms usually come on suddenly instead of slowly developing and are characterized by chills, body aches, fatigue and a headache.
However, overall the province has given 278,000 doses of the vaccine, up eight per cent from previous year.
The CDC recommends that everyone 6-months-old and older get a flu shot every year.
The Aurora child is one of 13 pediatric deaths nationwide this flu season, and is the first flu-related death in IL this year, according to the Centers for Disease Control. "It's just a slow upward, so we're only at the beginning of flu season right now".
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This year's flu season began in late October and is expected to last through March.
"It's not too late for people to get the flu shot, which this year has been shown to be a good match with the strains of the virus circulation". The stations are stocked with surgical masks, hand sanitizer, tissues and signs encouraging anyone with flu-like symptoms to wear a mask. Vaccination is especially important for people at high risk of influenza complications, including pregnant women, older adults and young children.
Nationwide, past year about 49 million people in the US came down with influenza. "Get your flu shot and get protected".
Dr Kevin Kelleher, HSE Assistant National Director, Health Protection, said that Ireland had now entered the flu season.
Flu is widespread in most New England states, including MA, according to federal and state health data.
The 2018 epidemic overwhelmed many emergency rooms and urgent-care clinics, leading health-care providers to devise some innovative strategies for dealing with the flu. Children under 2 years old are free.
THE HSE has urged Limerick people in at-risk groups for the flu to get vaccinated, as the number of cases are expected to increase in the coming weeks.
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