Get That Flu Shot Yet? Yakima County Reports First Flu Death
Yakima County is reporting the first flu death of the season. Yakima Health District officials say the person was between the ages of 30 and 49-years-old.
POSITIVE FLU TESTS ARE INCREASING SO BE CAREFUL
They say flu activity in Yakima County is following last year's trend based on the total number of flu tests conducted during the week of November 5 to November 11 which showed 8.6% were positive flu tests.
Compare those numbers to a month earlier when health officials say 1.0% of the rapid tests were positive.
SO NOW WHAT SHOULD YOU DO?
Health officials say if you haven't had your flu shot now is the time to get the shot. In fact they recommend you stay up to date with vaccines that help reduce the spread of respiratory illness this fall and winter. Dr. Neil Barg, Health Officer, Yakima Health District says "as we approach the holiday season, we encourage all of you to remain up to date on the vaccinations that protect against respiratory infections. The vaccines for flu, RSV and COVID-19 will decrease the chance of severe illness and hospitalization. As gatherings occur, remember to follow public health recommendations, such as washing your hands frequently and staying home if you are sick.”
RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE YAKIMA HEALTH DISTRICT
•Receive the updated COVID-19 vaccine, flu vaccine, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine if eligible. Individuals can visit www.YakimaVaccines.org for more information.
•Stay home if you are sick and if individuals experience COVID-19 symptoms, get tested. Beginning November 20, every household in the United States can again place an order to receive four more free COVID-19 rapid tests delivered to their home. Individuals can place their order at www.COVIDTests.gov.
•Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.Individuals are encouraged to speak to their primary care provider about vaccination for themselves and their family to make informed decision-making. For those that do not have a primary care provider, please call 2-1-1.
WHO SHOULD GET THE FLU SHOT?
Flu Vaccine Everyone six months of age and older are recommended to get an annual flu vaccine. Young children, pregnant women, those with underlying health conditions, and people aged 65 and older are at high risk for flu-related complications.
LOTS OF PEOPLE LOOKING FOR HELP AT THE HOSPITAL
Yakima's hospital, MultiCare Yakima Memorial Hospital is warning of an increase in patients because of an increase in the number of people seeking help for respiratory illnesses. The hospital is recommending people wear a mask and be up-to-date with vaccines. The hospital is also hoping people limit visitors to help stop the spread of infection.
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Gallery Credit: Hannah Lang