Oakland County reports high flu activity in February

Pharmacist Gregory Lachhman administers a flu shot

Experts also say this year's flu vaccine is not as effective as in the past, as it doesn't match the deadly strain particularly well.

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said children are 59 percent less likely to get the virus if they're vaccinated.

People who contract the flu can become contagious from one day before becoming sick and up to seven days after.

The CDC said that the overall effectiveness of this year's vaccine is 36 percent.

Nearly 70 percent of flu this year has been cause by the influenza A H3N2 strain, and that's where the vaccine was weakest, with estimated effectiveness of only 25 percent. "Hospitals continue to report large numbers of sick patients and providers are reporting high numbers of patient visits due to flu and flu-like symptoms". Thomas shared this flu season has stayed level so far and she has yet to see an increase in flu cases. Also, the state's chief medical executive, Eden Wells, M.D., was quoted as saying the flu vaccine is a person's best defense against the flu and will help reduce the severity of symptoms even if people catch the flu despite being vaccinated. When well matched to circulating viruses, its effectiveness is about 60 percent.

Vaccines are available at doctors' offices and retail pharmacies.

As the death toll continues to rise each week, the CDC remains unchanged on strongly recommending immunization, most especially after its most recent analysis revealed vaccines to provide substantial protection against strains of influenza A and B viruses. "That's higher than we typically see for H3N2", Belongia tells The Washington Post. There are some indications, he said, that some vaccine production techniques produce better H3N2 protection than others do.

"We've got a good vaccine but not a great vaccine".

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A free flu shot clinic will be held Wednesday afternoon at the Citizen's Center, 10 Welcome St., from 3 to 6 p.m., for uninsured city children ages 1 and up and uninsured adults.

Solomon said that he too gets the flu shot every year and takes other precautions in preventing the flu. Nationwide, there have been at least 63 pediatric flu-related deaths since October 1. Already 63 children have died-three-quarters of whom were not vaccinated, according to CDC officials (via CNN).

"My wife got nervous after learning about the death of a little girl from Golden Hill", Richard Kanan said.

Flu seasons span from the 40th week of one year to the 39th week of the following year.

"It's mostly to protect my granddaughter, who has a low immune system", Woolf said. Flu strains mutate every year. Early detection could save your child's life.

The CDC anticipates weeks of flu activity to come.

"In view of the issues surrounding colds and flu that seem to be hitting our section, we are repeating the efforts to thoroughly clean and sanitize our schools", Scully said in a statement.

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