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Experts agree this is the worst flu season in recent years

18 January 2018

More than 400 people have been diagnosed with the flu in Lee County since September.

Last week, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention reported influenza had risen to "epidemic proportion throughout the United States". The state Department of Health says there have been 46 lab-confirmed flu deaths since October. "What's happening this year is that H3N2 strain mutated or changed, and that's what we're seeing".

So far, officials with the Oklahoma State Department of Health say that 22 people have died from the virus since September.

Fact or fiction? It's too late to get the flu shot. "This is not an uncommon infection".

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Public health experts also stress that a flu shot doesn't just protect the person who gets the vaccine, it protects the people around them - which is particularly important for children or others with weaker immune systems.

Enter your zip code at to find a location near you that is offering flu shots.

"It goes with being a global society", said Olivarez who added that 22,000 people die annually from the flu. This year's vaccination is estimated to be between 10 percent to 30 percent effective. Appointments must be made to receive flu vaccine, and are now being scheduled at the clinic.

Bet your lunch on it: flu season is here and it's hitting hard.

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Because elderly people are so vulnerable to the flu, some nursing homes and assisted-living facilities may limit visitors and resident activities, depending on the level of illness. Common symptoms include fever, chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, fatigue, vomiting and diarrhea.

The influenza A strain called H3N2 is making people so ill in California that thousands have shown up at hospitals, and some places are treating them in "surge tents" intended for major disasters.

Some administrators at hospitals with long wait times and crowded ERs have asked people who aren't severely ill to not seek medical treatment. Our season peaks between December and the end of February. Maria Gomez got her flu shot two months ago. They can prescribe anti-viral medications which can help reduce the severity and duration of the flu.

The CDC recommends most patients get antiviral drugs.

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Experts agree this is the worst flu season in recent years