Flu season intensifies in the BRHD

Published: Dec. 5, 2022 at 5:39 PM EST
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Doctors in the Blue Ridge Health District say it is already a robust flu season, and it is going to get worse this holiday season.

Health experts are urging you to roll up your sleeve and get vaccinated as case numbers are roughly three times higher than expected.

“This is the time now to get your flu vaccine, because it really is anticipated be a very robust flu season,” Dcotor Costi Sifri said. “You will be exposed to flu this season.”

BRHD reports the Charlottesville area is at a very high activity level coming out of Thanksgiving. The district expected around 40-50 cases this week, but it turned out to be 138. Even that number is an underestimate, because officials say not all sick kids are going to get tested when experiencing flu like illness.

Doctors with UVA Health say they’re seeing the same thing reflected in their offices in the form of an abundance of phone calls and many positive cases at primary care clinics, especially with kids.

The BRHD says cases are getting higher each week, which is why they recommend getting vaccinated now. Staff with the BRHD say getting your shot will help prevent severe illness.

“Flu vaccines are widely available throughout the community at local healthcare provider offices, pharmacies, and even grocery stores. Some places offer walk-ins and others require appointments, so we recommend that people call ahead or visit websites to find more details. People can also call their local health department to schedule an appointment for a flu vaccine,” BRHD spokesperson Kathryn Goodman said.

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