Maine reports sharp increase in flu across the state


by NewsDesk Laugh

The Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has reported a sharp increase in seasonal flu activity statewide.

The person receives the seasonal influenza vaccine (flu shot).

All 16 provinces are seeing a steady increase in flu activity. There were 63 flu-related hospitalizations reported to the Maine CDC last week, up 152 percent from the previous week. Of those hospitalized, nearly 50 percent were people 65 or older. This year, the Maine CDC reported 3,446 positive flu tests, 110 hospitalizations, and 31 outbreaks, indicating a higher and faster increase in flu activity than is typical for this time of year.

The best protection is the flu vaccine, which is recommended for those 6 months and older.

“Flu season in Maine has undoubtedly arrived, but it’s never too late to protect yourself and your loved ones in time for holiday gatherings,” said Maine CDC Director Nirav D. Shah. This year’s flu vaccine is a good match for the virus strains circulating in Maine and across the country. Getting a flu shot is the most effective way to prevent the spread of influenza, as well as its worst effects.”

Flu vaccination can reduce the risk of illness, doctor visits, and missed work or school. The flu vaccine can also reduce the severity of illness. Studies show The flu vaccine saves children’s lives and prevents serious events associated with chronic lung disease, diabetes and heart disease. It also helps prevent flu-related hospitalizations among working-age adults and the elderly.

In addition to vaccination, people can take the following steps to reduce the spread of the disease:

  • Stay home when you are sick
  • wash your hands
  • Cover coughs and sneezes
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects

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