Flu activity is still high across the country and CDC wants to make sure people know the importance of getting vaccinated and caring for yourself and loved ones who are sick. CDC recommends “take 3 actions” to fight the flu – get vaccinated, take every day preventative actions to stop the spread of germs (avoid sick people, stay home when you’re sick, cover your nose and mouth and wash your hands), and take antiviral drugs if your doctor prescribes them.
· CDC recommends a yearly flu vaccine as the first and most important step in protecting against flu.
· U.S. flu season continues; influenza-like-illness has fallen in the East and risen sharply in the West.
· The timing of flu is very unpredictable and can vary from season to season. Flu activity most commonly peaks in the United States in January or February. However, seasonal flu activity can begin as early as October and continue to occur as late as May.
· Symptoms of the flu may include fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, body aches, headaches, and fatigue.
· For information on weekly flu activity, please visit http://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/
· People seeking vaccination may need to call more than one provider to locate vaccine at this time. The flu vaccine finder at http://flushot.healthmap.org/ may be helpful.
· Antiviral treatment can avert serious outcomes and should begin as quickly as possible in high risk persons, including people 65 and older, young children, pregnant women, and people with certain underlying conditions like asthma, heart disease, diabetes and neurological disorders.
· While antiviral drugs work best when given within 48 hours of symptom onset, observational studies have shown that giving antivirals 48 or more hours after symptom onset can still prevent serious flu-related outcomes.
-- From CDC Message to Readers About 2012-2013 Flu