So far, nine states are already experiencing high flu activity, including Alabama, South Carolina, and New York City.
Following a slow start to the flu season, the U.S. has seen 3 weeks of influenza-like illness activity levels at above the national baseline of 2.2%, flu activity reported as regional or widespread in 24 states and Guam, and an increase in respiratory specimens testing positive for flu at clinical laboratories across the country. Since the beginning of flu season, there have been 186 cases and 10 deaths reported for all of Oklahoma.More news: Trump threatens to shut Mexico border ‘entirely’ unless he gets wall cash
Louisiana had seen high rates of flu in late November but numbers have dropped in that state.
According to new statistics by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, flu-related illnesses have spiked in Colorado over the past week.More news: Grand Forks Kmart to close in March
Officials are urging everyone to get a flu shot, but according to the CDC, only around 40 percent of Americans will do so. "Getting vaccinated protects you as well as the people around you, including those who are more vulnerable, like babies and young children, elderly people and people with chronic health conditions". During this period, there have been 1,305 influenza-related hospitalizations reported, and one influenza-associated pediatric death. So far this season there have been six admissions to ICU with confirmed influenza reported to PHA and two deaths reported in ICU patients who had lab confirmed influenza.
Last week, State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker declared that influenza is prevalent in New York State. It went from local to regional flu activity in the past week.More news: Bre Payton, conservative writer, dies at 26 after sudden illness
Hand-washing, staying away from sick people and avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth can help prevent the flu.