It seems that nearly everyone is miserable. We are suffering from classic flu symptoms of cough, fever, headache, stuffy nose and achy muscles. The flu is widespread everywhere except for Hawaii!
Hospitals have been flooded with flu patients – made worse by shortages of IV fluids, pooling bags, and Tamiflu. ( Due to the hurricane in Puerto Rico where they are made).
An average flu season is considered a public health disaster- leading to between 12,000 and 56,000 deaths in America adults! There have been several tragic deaths of children this season with the total of 63 as of last week. We always assume the deaths occur in people with underlying conditions – but last year- 43% were previously healthy!
The flu is nothing to sneeze at. Please take this seriously. The flu this year is primarily H3N2- but there are actually at least 3 additional types ( see previous blog). It’s NOT too late to get a flu shot – it’s protecting about 31% of the H3N2 strains. Even if you get the flu- the shot can reduce the risk of a life-threatening case of flu.
The flu often peaks in February- but this year- it’s too soon to tell.
This year is on track to be the worst in the last 5 years.
Look for CDC statistics next – and stay well!