Caldwell County Health Department encourages residents to take precautions to prevent flu.
“Caldwell County residents face a greater threat from flu than Coronavirus,” explained Health Department Director Anna Martin. “To give a comparison, last week North Carolina had 11 flu-associated deaths, while officials have not confirmed a single case of Coronavirus in the state.”
The CDC still considers Coronavirus to be a serious public health threat, but the immediate health risk to the general American public is considered low at this time. In contrast, the CDC estimates that between 12,000 and 79,000 people nationwide die from flu infections each year. Statewide, 90 flu-associated deaths have been reported already this flu season.
Certain groups are at higher risk for serious illness from flu, including children younger than five, pregnant women, people over 65, and those with certain chronic medical conditions, such as heart or lung disease.
Flu symptoms include:
- A fever of 100.4F/38C degrees or higher or feeling feverish (not everyone with the flu has a fever)
- A cough and/or sore throat
- A runny or stuffy nose
- Headaches and/or body aches
- Nausea, vomiting, and/or diarrhea (most common in children)
“Flu vaccination is the most effective protection against flu,” Martin said. “It’s not too late to take the vaccine this flu season.”
Flu vaccine is still available at the Caldwell County Health Department and can be obtained by calling the (828) 426-8400.
Early treatment with an antiviral drug can also help prevent flu infections from becoming more serious.
Other precautions to protect against the spread of flu and other viruses include:
- Staying home when you are sick until you have been fever free for at least 24 hours
- Washing your hands frequently, preferably with soap and water
- Covering your coughs and sneezes with a tissue and then discarding the tissue promptly
For more information about flu, visit www.Flu.NC.Gov.
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