Connecticut Reports its First Flu-Related Death This Season

Flu season off to an early – and nasty – start

"The concern with the H3N2 strain is it leads to serious complications and this is especially for seniors and individuals with chronic illness such as diabetes, lung disease, heart disease and so on", Kapaj added. Although it is hard to predict an influenza season, the authors noted that when A (H3N2) viruses was the dominant influenza strain in past seasons, hospitalizations and deaths were more common and the effectiveness of the vaccine was lower. He said flu strains always are out there, 365 days a year, readjusting and reforming.

"It's also important for all of us to do the simple things like washing your hands, coughing in your sleeve to try and protect those who are at high risk" Shabab said.

Have you got your flu vaccine this season, but you're now battling severe flu symptoms like you haven't?

"Even though we're seeing an increase in cases right now, this might not be the end, " she said.

However, doctors insist we can not underestimate the importance of "herd immunity", and that the shot may be more effective as lessening illness in those who do get sick.

Since September, there have been 106 lab-confirmed flu cases in the province, two intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and two outbreaks in long-term care facilities (LTC).

New figures from the Arizona Department of Health Services show there already have been 1,143 cases so far this season.

The vaccine also takes about two week to provide full protection against the flu so it's advised you get a shot sooner rather than later. At this time a year ago, Memorial Medical Center in Springfield had treated 14 cases of influenza.

Last year, flu remained widespread for 16 weeks, or through the beginning of April.

"This is more typical of what we see most years", Shahab said.

Health officials say the flu vaccine seems well matched to the viruses making people sick, but it's too early to tell how bad this season will be.

Australia's most recent flu season - which typically sets a pattern for what the USA will face - was particularly rough and the flu vaccine was only 10 percent effective there.

It's recommended for most everyone six months and older.

The four most deadly flu seasons of the last 10 years - in the winters of 2003-2004, 2007-2008, 2012-2013, and 2014-15 - were H3N2 seasons, each with a particular version of that flu type. This is your immune system doing its job, and should only last a day or so. This will also prevent you from infecting other people.

So to verify, it is still unknown how effective the vaccine will be in the US, but it will help.

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