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Flu Season Taking Its Toll on Ohio

It’s been a particularly rough flu season across the country. Boston declared a public health emergency as hospitals are overwhelmed with flu cases. The illness is talking a toll here, too, and WYSO’s Emily McCord reports that public officials it’s not too late to protect yourself.

It’s the same story here as many places across the country, significantly more flu cases are being reported than in years past. In Montgomery County, 700 cases have been confirmed since the flu season started in October and Bill Wharton with public health in Dayton and Montgomery County says that means there many more cases that are unreported. The good news, he says, is that the flu vaccine is well matched to the illness that’s been spreading around.

"The flu shot is formulated a year ahead of time. The feds have to guess what flu strains will be the most of a problem. Last year, they guessed very well. Some people think it doesn’t always work, and that’s true. It doesn’t always work. But it’s still at this point the best protection anybody can get."

Wharton says there are still plenty of flu shots available at local retailers as well as the public health Dayton Montgomery County.  He says the cost usually runs around $20 but the health department offers it for free for those in need. Wharton adds it too soon to tell if the number of flu cases have peaked, but it’s likely we’ll still see more flu until the season ends, usually in February or March.