Indiana Health Department: 4 flu deaths so far this season

Flu shot. File

Eight per cent more people have had the flu shot so far this season compared to this time previous year, according to the Ministry of Health.

In most parts of the country, most illnesses right now are being caused by a flu strain that leads to fewer hospitalizations and deaths as the kind of flu that dominated a year ago, according to officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In the past couple of weeks, flu activity across IN has gone from moderate and regional to high and widespread.

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This flu season is so far milder compared to last year's brutal one, but authorities are still on the watch. This is the first time these estimates- which cover the period from October 1, 2018 through January 5, 2019- are being provided during the flu season.

Influenza is highly contagious and easily spreads as people move about and travel, making tracking and forecasting flu activity a challenge. During pregnancy, women undergo changes to their immune system, heart and lungs that make them more prone to severe illness from flu throughout their pregnancy and in the two weeks following delivery, the agency warns.

For the first time this flu season, there has been an increase in flu activity in the state of Ohio.

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H1N1 viruses have been the most commonly identified flu viruses nationally.

Dr. Givelichian said another six children in the province have been treated for influenza in intensive-care units.

Especially in homes with young children, Murti recommends the flu vaccine for everyone in the household, including siblings, parents and grandparents.

The Ministry of Health said that people who want the flu vaccine can get in touch with their public health offices.

"Getting the flu vaccine early in pregnancy is one of the most important things you can do for yourself as an expecting mom", he said.

"Simple precautions would help prevent the spread of flu", said DAK President and flu expert Dr Nisar-ul-Hassan.

"Here's another proactive step you can take to protect your baby", Gupta said of a flu shot.

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