March 1, 2011
The Texas Department of State Health Services reminds people that it’s not to late to get vaccinated against the flu. DSHS recommends everyone over six months old be vaccinated.
Flu has been classified as “widespread” in Texas since mid-January, meaning that multiple regions of the state have been experiencing outbreaks or increasing numbers of flu cases over the last several weeks. Health officials warn that many more people are likely to get sick before flu season comes to an end, typically in May.
Flu is a serious illness that kills an average of 23,600 Americans a year, according to estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People over 65, pregnant women, young children and people with chronic health conditions are most at risk for complications and are especially urged to get the vaccine and to seek prompt medical attention should they come down with a flu-like illness.
Symptoms of the flu include high fever, coughing, severe headache, sore throat, aches, chills and fatigue.
Getting vaccinated is the best way for people to protect themselves and their families from flu. Additionally, DSHS reminds people to cover coughs and sneezes, wash their hands frequently with soap and water or hand sanitizer, and stay home if they’re sick.
(News Media Contact: Chris Van Deusen, DSHS Assistant Press Officer at 512-458-7753)
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