Texas, Oklahoma rank high for flu activity - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

Texas, Oklahoma rank high for flu activity

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DENISON, Texas -- Flu season is ramping up. According to the Walgreens Flu Index, Texas is the top state for flu activity.

Oklahoma isn't far behind, coming in at ninth place. But while Texas has had no reported flu deaths during the current season, Oklahoma health officials report 10 flu-related fatalities since September 1.

"It's been a very interesting year for the flu," said Dr. Lynn Brown, medical director at Select ER. "The vaccine is not covering well for the actual flu virus that we have. It's been somewhere along the order of 10 to 20 percent coverage for that. Consequently, people ... who have been immunized are still coming down with the flu."

Although a flu shot may not be as effective this year, Dr. Brown urges that everyone be vaccinated. If you do get the flu after getting the shot, your symptoms shouldn't be as bad, and can be treated with over-the-counter medications and hydration.

Not everyone is convinced about the need for a flu shot, though.

"I'm not taking any precautions," Denison resident Jeff Lohre said. "I haven't had [the flu] for years, so I don't take shots or anything like that, but I'm not the most social person either, so I don't think I'm exposed to it that often."

The latest nationwide report from the Centers for Disease Control says influenza activity remains widespread in Texas and Oklahoma and most of the continental United States.

Flu activity map
CDC Flu Activity Map for the week ending December 23, 2017

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