This flu season just made history.
Photo: Suwin / Shutterstock
This flu season has drawn attention for all the wrong reasons: It's been spreading across the U.S. faster than usual and there have been multiple cases of flu deaths. Sh*t just got even more real when the CDC announced that there are currently more people in the hospital for the flu in the U.S. than they've ever recorded.
"Overall hospitalizations are now the highest we've seen," CDC Acting Director Anne Schuchat stated at a media briefing, according to CBS News. The CDC announced during the briefing that a total of 53 children have died from the flu so far this season.
#Influenza activity continues to increase across the U.S. Thirty-nine states plus New York City and Puerto Rico are now experiencing “high” influenza-like activity and all states in the continental U.S. are reporting widespread flu activity for the third consecutive week. CDC recommends #flu vaccination, even if you have already been sick. Prompt flu antiviral treatment is also key for people who are very sick with flu symptoms or people who are at high risk of developing complications and have flu symptoms. This transmission electron microscopic (TEM) image shows H3N2 Influenza virus particles. Learn more about current influenza activity: http://bit.ly/CDC-FluWeekly CDC Public Health Image Library (phil.cdc.gov). #FluSeason #FluView #CDC #PublicHealth #UndertheLens #science #health
If you're wondering if it's still worth getting the flu shot this year, the answer is yes (even if you've already had the flu this season). The vaccine is still the most effective way to protect against the flu, and there are other strains besides the H3N2 going around.
Plus, flu season is far from over. "We have seen 10 consecutive weeks of elevated influenza activity so far, and our average flu season duration is between 11 and 20 weeks. So, there may be many weeks left for this season," the CDC wrote in a Facebook Q&A today. (Related: Is It Too Late to Get the Flu Shot?)