Iowa officials confirm start of flu season
The State Hygienic Laboratory has stated that its scientists successfully identified influenza cases that appear to be spreading throughout the state. Fortunately, it appears that the state’s overall influenza activity is relatively low.
Symptoms of the flu include tiredness, fever, cough, headache, body aches, sore throat and nasal congestion.
Health professionals are using this as an opportunity to encourage the public to ensure that they have received their influenza vaccinations for the season.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the IDPH both reassure the public that yearly influenza vaccines are safe for all people 6 months old or above. Vaccinations are especially important for people in regular contact with those more at risk to contract the flu, such as children with asthma, babies, women who are pregnant, and elderly individuals.
“The most effective way to prevent influenza illness and death is the yearly flu vaccine,” Patricia Quinlisk, IDPH's medical director, said. “Based on CDC estimates, an average of 300,000 Iowans gets the flu every year and together, flu and its complication of pneumonia cause an average of 1,000 deaths yearly in Iowa.”