Iowa reports rising number of flu-related deaths

Iowa reports rising number of flu-related deaths

The victims include 19 people 81 or older and two people between 61 and 80 years old.

Health Department data reveals a higher level of inter-season flu cases have been reported across the state since January 1, with 800 lab-confirmed incidences of influenza compared to the five-year average of 301. "The dominant H3N2 A strain is the variety that causes more severe disease, especially among older persons".

In health news, a majority of the country is dealing with outbreaks of the flu.

The Department of Public Health says flu activity in Iowa, and most of the nation, is now classified as "widespread" and that all four strains covered by this year's vaccine have been reported in the state.

Most people who experience mild symptoms do not need to seek immediate medical attention.

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"While flu spreads every year, the timing, severity and length of the season varies from one year to another", Nordlund said. "They should stay home from school or work and ensure that they are getting the rest and fluids they need".

Still, the CDC says that the best way to protect yourself and others from influenza is to get vaccinated.

But Tosh said there are times when going to the doctor is necessary.

The health department's weekly report also shows Upstate hospital emergency departments are seeing a spike in patients coming in with flu symptoms.

To help prevent the spread of infection, Moore emphasized the importance of washing hands and sneezing into a tissue or shirtsleeve to prevent germs from getting into the air.

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