Medical

1st flu-related child death reported in New Jersey

1st flu-related child death reported in New Jersey

"Flu activity has taken off our projection is that it's going to continue to increase, probably for the next few months", says Dr. Andrew Walshak with Presbyterian/ St. Luke's Medical Center.

"The dominant virus is different from past year, which is excellent".

Canada-wide, 414 children have been hospitalized with the flu, the vast majority the H1N1 strain of influenza A, which tends to hit children hardest.

Kaiser noted it's not too late to get vaccinated against influenza.

A spokesperson for the HSE said that the best way to protect yourself is to get the flu vaccine. "There's plenty of vaccines out there, most doctor's offices have some and if not you can go to any pharmacy to receive one".

Experts say the United States is likely in the early weeks of the flu season.




Although not a flawless vaccine, Morse says the average person may not realize just how important a role the influenza vaccine plays in public health.

The flu spreads "mainly by droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk. This is called 'herd immunity, '" he explained.

Pregnant women or people with medical conditions related to their heart, lungs or immune system are encouraged to ask their primary care provider about antiviral medication as soon as they get symptoms.

Of course, it's still possible to get the flu even if you've gotten the flu shot, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't get vaccinated.

Many people also don't realize how serious the effects can be. "We're so used to the flu that we really underestimate it", Morse said.

Flu vaccine critics, including naturopathy practitioners, argue that mercury, detergents and other additives sometimes packed into the shots can do more harm than good. "It's also important to wash hands regularly and thoroughly, and stay home if showing any flu symptoms".


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