UT Medical Center reports 6 flu deaths in January

Officials say the number of flu cases in our area continues to climb and it seems a different strain of the virus is now starting to circulate.

As alarming as those numbers are, they barely capture the magnitude of the sweeping epidemic, doctors say, because most people self-treat influenza and their illnesses are not counted in the weekly surge of lab-confirmed cases.

As flu cases rise across Michigan, Oakland County health officials are calling on residents to get vaccinated.

Influenza is a serious disease that comes on quickly and causes high fever, body aches, headache, sore throat, fatigue, runny/stuffy nose and cough.

"It's a tough year", said Vermillion Medical Clinic's Becky McManus. Then wash them again.

According to numbers, just released from South Carolina DHEC Wednesday, there were 38 flu deaths within the last week alone almost doubling the total number of deaths to 84.

The same virus was the dominant flu bug last winter, when the flu season wasn't as bad. There have been several tragic and widely publicized deaths of children this flu season, with at least 30 such cases so far. "My message is, if you haven't gotten a vaccine, please get a vaccine".

Turkish troops face fierce battles in Syrian Kurdish enclave
The attempt by Syrian Kurds to produce a similar autonomous region on the Syria-Turkish border raised hackles in Ankara. However, those differences do "not mean that [the KNC] will stand behind these violent attacks on civilians", he said.

Sandra Archer with Shawnee Mission Health said it's not too late for a flu shot to help. "This is a severe flu season that is claiming some seemingly healthy individuals". "It's important to remain vigilant and practice good prevention techniques, especially for seniors, the very young and school-aged children".

"When they come in, we got to get masks on them real quickly", he said.

"Oakland County is now in the midst of a very active flu season with widespread and intense flu activity", said Leigh-Anne Stafford, health officer for the Oakland County Health Division. "We will not release the county of death or any type of identifying information, other than an age range", says Courtney Sheeley, DPH communications specialist.

The medical system also is asking the public to not bring any children under 18 to the emergency department, outpatient or doctor visits, unless the appointment is for the child. "We are seeing a lot of secondary illnesses resulting from this year's flu".

He stands by his report of two deaths compared to health officials only declaring one from Polk County.

"Yes, it is still recommended to get a flu shot", Johnson said.


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