Nearly 1,300 hospitalizations from the flu in Wisconsin - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Nearly 1,300 hospitalizations from the flu in Wisconsin

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MADISON (WKOW) -- An aggressive flu strain is spreading quickly across the county, including in Wisconsin.

The state's Department of Health Services released a report Wednesday saying, as of Tuesday night, 1,287 people have been hospitalized because of the flu. And as of last Friday, there are a total of 2,837 influenza cases in Wisconsin.

DHS spokesperson Claire Smith says this current flu season is the most severe season in the last five years; excluding the H1N1 pandemic in 2009. 
 
Smith says the flu season has not even peaked yet. She says the average peak is in late January to early February.
 
According to Smith, compared to previous years, the current flu season is about a month ahead of schedule. However, Smith says if you look at historical trends, the past few flu seasons have been occurring late.
 
During the entire 2011-2012 influenza season there were a total of 2,034 confirmed cases and 389 flu associated hospitalizations, according to Smith.
 
Smith says the most effective way to prevent influenza is by getting vaccinated, and she says it's not too late for individuals to get the flu shot. Smith says it's important to get the shot, not only to protect yourself, but to also protect your friends and family, and especially those who are most susceptible to complications from the flu. 
 
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, everyone aged six months and older should be vaccinated.
 
There are still five more weeks to go before the end of this flu season.
 
To find more information regarding the flu season click here.


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