Five Tips for Avoiding State Flu Outbreak
Pennsylvania has been hard hit by influenza, with one hospital setting up a special tent to treat the wave of patients.
The city of Boston has even declared a state of flu emergency.
Flu season started more than a month early this year and is now widespread in Pennsylvania and 46 other states.
In some cases, flu symptoms of high fever, headache, fatigue, cough, sore throat, and body aches have been combined with a stomach virus and whooping cough.
More than 200,000 people are hospitalized for influenza each year, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. Between 3,000 and 49,000 people die annually as a result of influenza.
The best way to avoid getting the flu in Pennsylvania is to get vaccinated.
The CDC says a vaccine is available in most places, although some parts of the country have seen spot shortages.
Following is from Yahoo News:
[M]ost of the 135 million vaccine doses manufactured this year have already been administered.
Those who were vaccinated with this season’s flu shot were about 62 percent less likely to have to go to the doctor’s office for flu symptoms, the CDC says. It’s not too late to get inoculated, though it takes about two weeks for the effects to fully set in.
DC scientists are also seeing signs that the tide may be turning, at least in some Southern and Southeastern states where flu cases appear to be dropping off.
Here is some advice for fighting the flu:
- If you have underlying medical problems, call your doctor early to see if you need an antiviral drug.
- Stay home until your fever has been gone for at least 24 hours. That will cut down on the number of people you might give it to.
- Cover your coughs and sneezes.
- Keep your hands clean, using soap, water or hand sanitizer.
- Drink plenty of liquids.
Patients streaming into a special flu tent outside Lehigh Valley Hospital in Salisbury Township were desperate for relief.
There have also been reports of shortages of pediatric Tamiflu, which is used to treat children who have come down with the bug.
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