Dallas County reports fourth, fifth flu-related deaths of 2017-18

A package of Tamiflu in a pharmacy       Mario Tama  Getty Images

The flu season is in full force in the Bay Area and local hospitals are admitting a large volume of patients with flu related symptoms.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports "influenza activity" is ticking up across the southern half of the USA, with one strain (H3N2) responsible for the majority of the deadliest, most risky cases reported so far.

According to the Department of Health, in the last week alone, there have been 1,745 laboratory confirmed cases of the flu, a 96 percent increase from the previous week. The highest rate of hospitalization was among adults 65 or older, followed by adults between 50 and 64 and then children up to 4 years old. People with no medical insurance can get a flu shot at a County public health center. However, they encourage anyone with flu symptoms to stay away. "People become protected about two weeks after receiving the vaccine", said Dr. Taylor. Antiviral drugs work best when administered within 48 hours of the onset of symptoms.

The California Department of Public Health said that as of December 16, the date of its most recent report, it counted 10 deaths in its under-65 population.

According to N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, a child in the central part of the state died last week from complications associated with flu. Out of the blue, you feel exhausted, your muscles ache and your forehead feels hot.

This year's vaccine isn't as effective as usual, but it can still prevent you from getting some versions of the flu.

Those sick with the flu should see their doctors, who can prescribe medications to combat the disease. "Those things make us concerned that we're going to have a lot of sick people".

"Make sure you're using hand sanitizer a lot", said Dr. Charles Bregier with Novant Health. Whatever you touch should be disinfected. Drink lots of it, along with other clear liquids to prevent fluid loss or dehydration.

Fever is typical of the flu.

The release also tells medical providers that "Physicians should prioritize influenza as a possible diagnosis for ill patients when treating them".

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