Tara Granahan, WPRO News
Coughing, sneezing, aching body! Is it really the flu? "Probably not", said Dr. Michael Fine, director of the RI Health Department. Fine described symptoms of the flu on the WPRO Morning News with Tara Granahan and Andrew Gobeil as having a fever of 101 or 102 degrees, nasuea, vomitting, headaches; he said, it hurts to comb your hair.
And this year? According to Dr. Fine, the flu is on the rise. "We're in the middle of our flu outbreak, seeing between 14-20 hospitalizations every single day... the hospitals are full, the emergency rooms are full, this is the time to get a flu shot."
So, is it too late in the season? "It is absolutely NOT too late!" Dr. Fine says it takes two weeks for the vaccine to take affect, and the state will see flu cases through the end of February.
Fine added, when you get the flu shot, it's not only for yourself, but the people you love. "We've seen 22 hospitalizations of kids in RI this year... nationally there have been 16 deaths of children from influenza, those are the people we want to protect." Dr. Fine added, those with chronic disease, immuno-compromised, infants and the elderly - can get dangerously sick. However, Fine said this year's flu shot is very well matched to the strain of this season, "but it won't work if you don't get it."
For more information, http://www.health.ri.gov/