More flu-related deaths reported in Dallas County

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In Montrose, California, physician assistant Jennifer DeMoss said the flu season has been "crazy so far". "It can still help prevent some of the illness".

"This increased rate of flu activity is concerning because influenza can be a serious disease for anyone, including children, pregnant women, and previously healthy young adults", said Dr. Burnestine Taylor, medical officer for Disease Control and Prevention for the ADPH.

In the USA, influenza activity has significantly increased over recent weeks with the Influenza A (H3N2) virus strain predominating. Adults can continue to spread the virus up to seven days, while children can spread it longer.

San Diego County reported approximately 3,900 flu cases this season compared to 599 cases this time previous year.

The flu vaccine DCHHS provides is an all-in-one shot that protects against multiple flu strains including the H1N1virus.

The CDC added that elevated numbers of hospitalizations and positive laboratory tests have been reported in most states. "It's not too late to get vaccinated".

The flu is already gripping 36 states and has killed at least 70 people in the U.S., according to data released by the CDC on Friday.

Nationwide, nine children have died because of the flu through December 16. "It takes approximately two weeks for your body to build immunity once you've received the vaccination".

However, county officials stressed that "In reality, every year is a bad flu year for the people who get sick".

To avoid contracting the flu, public health officials recommend that people wash their hands regularly, avoid touching their eyes, nose or mouth, avoid contact with people who are sick, and get a flu shot.

This week alone, 172 people were hospitalized due to the flu. However, they encourage anyone with flu symptoms to stay away.

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