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Departmetn of Health: Flu season starts early

Posted: Thursday, Jan 10th, 2013

CHEYENNE - Winter weather might be lagging behind, and there are those among us who are scrambling to catch up on holiday preparations. It seems, though, flu season is early to the party.

The Wyoming Department of Health (DOH) stated the flu is showing up early across the state, and officials are encouraging residents to get an annual flu vaccine. According to the most recent activity report from the DOH, Niobrara County reported only one case of the flu from Dec. 2 to Dec. 8. The statistics run the gamut from single cases in Carbon, Teton and Niobrara Counties to 113 cases in Campbell County and 101 cases in Sheridan County.

Though the local case number is low, Dr. Wendy Braund, state health officer and Pubic Health Division senior adminstrator said individuals six months or older getting a vaccine is key to preventing the flu in individuals and the spread throughout the state.

“Whether you choose a flu shot or a nasal spray vaccine, getting immunized is safe and is the single most effective things most people can do to help prevent getting ill with influenza or passing it on to others.”

Other preventative measures are just as simple. “Simple steps such as covering your mouth and nose with your sleeve or a tissue when you sneeze and cough, frequently washing your hands and staying home from work, school, day care and errands when you are ill can help,” Braund said. Influenza is a contagious respiratory disease, and isn’t the same as the “stomach flu.” The symptoms include fever, dry cough, sore throat and body aches.

For more information about the flu, preventative measures and other health news, visit www.health.wyo.gov.

For the complete article see the 01-09-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 01-09-2013 paper.

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