Flu Cases Rising Fast in United States
The flu cases rose quickly last week across the United States and a new case of the H3NV2 virus was found in a child in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Most of the new cases are from the Southern part of the country.
The 2012-2013 flu season started in October, a little early this year but not in big numbers until last week. There are been 5 pediatric deaths to date since this flu season started. The states with the highest amount of flu cases are Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas. These states were followed by moderate cases in Georgia, Missouri and Tennessee. You can also view the Google flu trends to see more and which states are having more flu cases.
Deaths and Hospitalizations From Flu Cases
Each year more than 200,000 people are hospitalized with complications from the flu. The CDC estimates anywhere between 3,000 and 49,000 deaths per year result from the flu. Why so vague on these flu cases stats? States are not required to report individual seasonal flu cases or deaths of people older than 18 years old to the Centers for Disease Control. Seasonal influenza is infrequently listed on death certificates of people who die from flu complicatons. Many seasonal flu-related deaths occur one or two weeks after a person comes down with the flu. This is because either the person may develop a secondary bacterial co-infection or because seasonal flu can aggravate an existing chronic illness (such as congestive heart failure or COP disease). Many of these sick people may not have been tested for the flu either.
How to Protect Yourself From Being A Flu Case Statistic
- Get a flu shot – it’s recommended for anyone over the age of 6 months old.
- Wash your hands thoroughly and properly.
- Stay away from sick people and crowds during peak flu season.
- Avoid shaking hands or kissing if at all possible.
- Cover your mouth when sneezing or coughing.
- Contact your doctor if you feel flu symptoms coming on and get antiviral drugs to alleviate symptoms and duration for you.
- Be sure to get proper rest and vitamins during the flu season.
Have you received your flu shot yet? Do you know someone with the flu now?