Flu hits South Carolina

akelley@thesunnews.comSeptember 30, 2013 

Flu has arrived in South Carolina according to the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control.

“Our agency’s Bureau of Laboratories has confirmed five cases of flu in the Midlands area of the state,” said Linda Bell, state epidemiologist. “This confirmation reinforces the need for vaccination and the good sense steps to prevent the spread of the flu virus.”

Influenza, commonly called the flu, is a naturally occurring viral disease that causes respiratory infections. Symptoms may include a sudden onset of fever, dry cough, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, sore throat and nasal congestion.

“Vaccination remains the single best way to prevent the spread of flu,” Bell said. “We recommend the flu vaccine for everyone six months of age or older. Flu season typically peaks in February in South Carolina. But you should get vaccinated as soon as possible to give your body time to strengthen its natural resistance to the virus before you are exposed. We strongly recommend flu vaccine for anyone who wants to reduce their risk from flu and its complications.”

DHEC will focus its resources on providing flu shots to people who are uninsured, under-insured, and those who cannot receive a flu vaccine anywhere else. Those with health insurance or coverage for the vaccine are asked to visit their health care provider or local pharmacy to get the flu shot.

To learn more about the flu visit www.scdhec.gov/flu.

Contact AMANDA KELLEY at 626-0381, or follow her at Twitter.com/TSN_akelley.

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