According to the latest reports, the flu virus continues to spread across 40 states. As the flu season is at its peak, health experts urge the population to get the flu shot as soon as possible to keep the virus from spreading to their family members, acquaintances, or work colleagues and protect their own health. In Puerto Rico, there have been already 15 pediatric deaths reported, with seven of them occurring in the last week of January. Furthermore, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveled that approximately 12,000 individuals have been infected with type-A influenza and exhibit flu symptoms or signs of flu-like illness.
Of the 54 U.S. states, 51 of them are expecting an increase in the number of flu patients or people exhibiting flu-like symptoms in the upcoming weeks. Physicians say that residents across 15 regions are most exposed to the virus. Now, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Kansas, South Carolina, Oklahoma, and Pennsylvania have also been placed on the list of the states with the highest risk of contracting the flu virus.
Physicians all across the country said the increase in the number of patients is only natural for this time of year, as colleges and schools go back in season.
“We are hitting at the peak right now, which is pretty typical for late January mid-February for influenza”, said University of Rochester’s head of respiratory pathogens, Dr. David Topham.
In the light of recent events, both the scientific as well as medical communities urge the population to get vaccinated in order to prevent the flu virus from further spreading as soon as possible. Emory Healthcare’s chief medical officer, Dr. James Steinberg says it is not too late to receive the vaccine.
While the common cold closely resembles influenza, the latter is a highly contagious viral infection that threatens the lives of young children, elderly individuals, or those who battle with chronic diseases. The researchers said that this year’s flu shot is a good match for the strains that have been circulating recently in the country. Nevertheless, because of the aggressive flu activity, health experts are considering the option of administering two and even three doses for a better protection against the flu virus.
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