Health
12:12 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Flu season: Activity is widespread

Flu activity is now widespread across most of the nation.  WBFO'S Eileen Buckley asked the Erie County Health Commissioner about this year's flu season.

Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein received her flu shot in the fall.
Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein received her flu shot in the fall.
Credit WBFO News file photo

"The strain that we are seeing the most right now is H1N1 remember that's the same strain we saw in 2009 that we refer to affectionately as the Swine flu," said  Erie County Health commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein. 

While some states have reported flu deaths  -- specifically among children -- Dr. Burstein tells WBFO News so far there have not been any in Erie county. 

"Fortunately we have not had any pediatric deaths in New York State, including Erie County this year related to flu," said Burstein.  "Another piece of good news. is we are not seeing as much flu this year as we did the same time last year, however, we are seeing flu."

But our region normally experiences an extended flu season.

"In our area the flu season actually extends thorough the spring, so we are just at the at the beginning of flu season," said Burstein.

The Center for Disease Control reported that about  61-percent of those hospitalized with flu related symptoms have been those 18-to 64 years of age. 

Health officials encourage everyone to get a flu shot to prevent the spread. Burstein says it's still not too late to get a vaccine and there is plenty of it in stock.