This Year’s Flu Season One of Earliest, Strongest on Record

January 11, 2013

You might be one of the thousands in North Georgia affected by the flu this year.

Seems like more people are getting the flu and staying sick longer than in years past, and if you think that, you’re right.

Dave Palmer, District II Public Health spokesman says the flu is now widespread in 29 states and one of those states is Georgia.

“We’re seeing more flu activity this time of year than we have in years past,” Palmer said. “So it is a heightened flu season. However, we do have plenty of flu vaccine available.”

This year’s flu season in Georgia and across the U.S. this year started earlier and is stronger than flu seasons over the past ten years, according to the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta.

And many people, who got a flu shot, are still getting sick.

Palmer said it appears this year’s flu virus is stronger than the vaccine.

“Most of the flu that people are getting is the flu that’s in the vaccine, and it was a good match between the vaccine and what people are getting, but it seems this strain is a little stronger than what people are getting in the vaccine,” Palmer said.

Palmer said no vaccine is 100% effective, but it will help most people avoid getting sick.

“The CDC did say for people who had the flu shot and are still getting sick, their symptoms seem to be less severe than those who have not had the flu shot,” Palmer said.

Palmer said everyone should be vaccinated against the flu particularly the elderly, small children and pregnant women and those with depressed immune systems.

And you can avoid getting the flu by eating right, getting plenty of rest, covering your mouth when you cough, and washing your hands frequently.