"In the past week we have seen increased influenza-like illness activity, more hospitalizations and tragically, more flu-associated deaths".
Health departments should work closely with veterinary agencies and relevant units to detect and handle any flu outbreaks among poultry, and to tightly control the trans-border sale and transportation of sick poultry, to prevent virus transmission to people. Of those, 84 are Influenza A and 31 are Influenza B. Even though this year's vaccination is not very effective, health officials say it still offers some protection. So far this season, flu activity has been elevated for nine weeks, meaning that the flu season may be only about halfway over, the CDC said.
The number of Americans hospitalized for influenza has increased to the highest levels in almost 10 years, according to the CDC's most recent flu update published Friday.
Have you gotten your flu shot?
According to the News & Observer, 95 people and counting have died from the flu or flu related symptoms (pneumonia, bronchitis and sinus infections, as well as exacerbations of asthma and congestive heart disease) in North Carolina, including the 10 deaths last week.
Dr. Daniel Jernigan, director of the influenza division in the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease at CDC, highlighted two notable characteristics of this flu season. In fact, this year's predominant flu strain, H3N2, is one of the most severe strains of the flu virus.
Livingston County is approaching its peak flu season, and the season typically goes through April. "The most effective way to protect yourself and your loved ones from the flu is by getting a flu vaccination".
In other parts of the province, this year's influenza is proving to be particularly brutal. "We're seeing more people come in who had the flu vaccine who now have the flu".
Visitors exhibiting flu symptoms - including fever, runny nose, cough or sore throat - are not permitted to visit patients in any UM Shore Regional Health facility. The flu vaccine is meant to fight against H3N2, H1N1 and influenza B.
The London-region is not alone.
"We've had number schools that have had as little as ten to twenty to hundreds plus so we've had quite a bit of flu activity in our district".
People who are at high risk for flu complications include young children, people ages 65 and over, pregnant women and people with chronic conditions, according to the CDC.
Hawkinson, of KU, says it's still not too late to get a flu shot.
While medical professionals tout washing hands frequently and covering mouths when coughing, Hawkinson said they also recommend people get the vaccine as well, despite uncertainty about its effectiveness.