CDC says Kentucky at highest level for flu activity - WDRB 41 Louisville News

CDC says Kentucky at highest level for flu activity

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – People are pouring into pharmacies and clinics to get flu shots as the virus has hit its highest level of activity, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“I've been procrastinating for the past three months,” Mary Jane Miller told WDRB News.

It's that statewide procrastination that may be to blame for Kentucky's flu activity jumping from regional to widespread -- the highest level given by the CDC.

“We have been seeing a lot of flu especially in the past month,” said Walgreens Pharmacist Ashleigh Willinger.

The CDC encourages anyone over six months of age to get the flu shot or the nasal vaccine spray.

“It's still the best form of protection from the flu, so it's the best way to insure you're going to protect yourself as much as possible,” Willinger told WDRB News.

That's why Mary Jane Miller came in for her flu shot.

“I was afraid I would get sick. I have grandchildren and great grandchildren and I don't want them to get sick,” said Miller.

Sick with symptoms like fever, body aches, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, which can last up to 14 days.

The vaccinations take two weeks for the immunity to develop. Pharmacists say now is the perfect time to get the shot before the coming holidays.

“When people get together and it's cold outside, so we're in very close quarters with each other and germs are more easily spread in that manner. So just continuing to wash your hands, cough or sneeze into the crook of your arm, or into your elbow instead of on your hands, or instead of not covering your mouth at all would be a good way to keep things from spreading,” said Willinger.

The Walgreens Weekly Flu Index places Kentucky in the top ten states for flu activity. When looked at by city, Louisville is even higher on the list and lands at number seven.

Willnger says many people avoid the shot because they don't want to get sick. She says that's a common misconception.

“Your body is going to start making protection against the flu virus so sometimes that can make you feel a little extra tired or like you might be coming down with something, but it's not an actual illness,” said Willinger.

Flu season started in October and can last until May.

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