County reports third flu death

Joseph and Serese Marotta

The vaccine not only helps prevent a person from getting the flu, she says, but if a person still gets the flu after being vaccinated it will help lessen the severity of the illness.

Flu season is never a fun time for parents and their children. Tennessee typically sees four to five deaths among children from flu-related complications each year.

Greene County residents can schedule an appointment for a flu shot at the offices of Greene County Public Health in Xenia.

Only hospitalized cases of flu, pediatric flu death or Novel Influenza A cases are reportable to the local health department. Almost every state is reporting widespread influenza. "We are still doing the flu vaccine as we did in the 1950s", he observed, adding that next year's flu season, 2018, will be the hundred-year anniversary of the 1918 flu pandemic that killed an estimated 20 to 40 million people worldwide.

Clay County Health Department Officials are spreading the word: If you haven't gotten your flu shot, now's the time. The 2015-16 flu season a year ago did not peak until early March.

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Tennessee is now among the states with the highest levels of flu activity according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "People can spread the flu for up to 24 hours before they start to show symptoms, and they can continue to be contagious for a full week after the onset of symptoms - sometimes even longer with children".

The state Department of Health released the latest flu season figures on Friday. "If we could get to the point where we could get maybe 90% of the population protected, we would have so many more people protected against cocirculating strains", he said.

"It's been quiet, but we could see an increase", Allen said.

Statewide, there have been 148 flu deaths since the 2016-17 season began, officials said. "But you should also cover your mouth and nose whenever you cough or sneeze". Additionally, if you feel any flu symptoms, it is smart to go to the doctor and get tested for influenza as soon as possible.

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