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Ohio Department of Health reports state's first pediatric flu death of season

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Administering a flu vaccination to a patient is Terri Buratczuk clinical director of the Tri City Health Partnership a free health clinic in St. Charles that provides services for those who are uninsured or underinsured

In fact, different years bring different strains of flu, and the numbers of cases, complications, hospitalizations, and deaths related to the flu vary from year to year.

The season could be as severe as the one in 2014-15, officials say, which was the most severe flu season in years. A flu shot can also reduce a child's chance of dying from the flu.

ODH also is reporting 1,750 new confirmed flu-associated hospitalizations in OH during the first week of January, a significant increase over 925 reported during the last week of December. There have been 3,854 flu hospitalizations reported in Ohio. It's true that the vaccine was only 10 per cent effective in preventing influenza A. That means washing hands, covering mouths and staying home from school or work as to not expose others, Johnson said. That's why getting the flu vaccination is the safest and most effective way to prevent the flu for everyone 6 months and older. Both are indicated by coughing and a runny nose, but the flu is separated by headaches, chills, a possible fever and extreme fatigue.

During December, the hospital saw 52 out of 229 tests indicate a positive presence of influenza...a rate of 23%.

Each Friday, the Kane County Health Department releases statistics providing an overview of influenza within the county.

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Influenza A tends to affect older people more severely, and its incidence is down this year compared to the severe infection levels seen last year. One factor is invincibility, where people never had the flu or gotten a flu shot, which makes them believe they don't need one.

It can take up to two weeks to build full immunity to influenza following a vaccination, so people should get shots immediately, the department said.

Schneider said the key to surviving the flu season without getting ill is to wash hands often, get the flu vaccine and exercise isolation from the public when you are sick with the flu.

Anyone who is particularly at risk - including the elderly and those with heart and/or lung conditions - should seek immediate medical attention if they show flu-like symptoms.

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat and sometimes the lungs. In its advisory, the government has said that H1N1 is also a type of Seasonal Influenza and is a self- limiting viral disease.

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