Dynette Rombough, director of Emergency Department Services for Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center in Woodbridge, said the hospital is seeing "extensive flu cases in the emergency department, especially compared to a year ago". The vaccine provided 59 percent protection against H3N2 in children 8 and younger.
For Thursday's report, they looked at the cases of 4,562 kids and adults who showed up with flu-like illness at the five sites. The agency color-codes the severity of the outbreak using a legend of bright green for states with minimal flu activity, rising to deep red for those inundated by the virus.
The flu shot is only 25 percent effective against the most prevalent strain of the virus circulating during this season's severe flu epidemic. "This is a bad incident, and it affects not only the family, and our hearts and prayers go out to the family, but it affects so many different families who are all now anxious and scared about what could happen to their children". She shared she recommends individuals get the flu shot because when a vaccine exists to prevent an illness, it should be utilized.
"It is not too late to get a flu shot", said Kelli Rader, regional director.More news: Trump administration: Steel imports threaten USA national security
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This article has been updated to include comments from Dr. Anne Schuchat. Each year, they're prepared for when flu season rolls around.
But even with all that, it's still a hard task to stave off the flu. That may not seem like many people, but not enough flu vaccines were produced for every single American to be vaccinated.
By following these tips, you can protect yourself and your family from the flu. Tragically, an Upper Peninsula child died from the flu earlier this month, according to a story in Crain's Detroit Business.
"For this season, only 20 percent [of children who died from the flu] have been vaccinated, and half of these children were otherwise healthy", he said. Vaccine is still available, and there is likely to be flu activity for weeks to come. MA health officials are urging vaccination.
In order to prevent the spread of the flu, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends anyone who is sick stay home until 24 hours after fever subsides without medication, unless they are seeking medical care.