The regular flu, not the H1N1 strain, is causing some problems throughout the state this season. The virus is widespread in the state, prompting the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control to call for increased vaccination,
The state epidemiologist Jerry Gibson says there is also a notable increase in hospitalizations. He also says that many people don’t realize that the flu causes mild to severe respiratory illness and can be deadly. The agency reports that eight South Carolinians have died from flu-related illness since October. Data from October 2010 through January 22, shows the virus on the rise in at least half of DHEC’s eight health regions.
DHEC strongly recommends anyone six months or older to be vaccinated. Flu vaccinations are available in either shot or nasal spray from private providers and DHEC county public health departments. The average flu season peaks in February in this state.
More information about the flu can be found at: http://www.scdhec.gov/flu.