Parents Encouraged to Vaccinate Children from the Flu
With three reports of influenza-related pediatric deaths in Minnesota and widespread flu activity being reported in Wisconsin, state health officials are reminding parents that the best protection against the flu is vaccination.
"Even though this year's flu strain is considered mild, children are more likely to become infected and may experience more severe symptoms than adults," said Dr. Sheri Johnson, State Health Officer. "Anyone who has not been vaccinated yet should contact their health care provider or local health department to get a flu shot since there's still time to get protected."
Wisconsin reported its first influenza case in November 2006. The season is anticipated to run until the end of April, so there is still time for the vaccine to provide protection from influenza. Health care providers are indicating they have vaccine available.
Influenza is a contagious respiratory disease caused by a virus. "Flu" illness ranges from very mild to severe cases, and in some instances, can cause life-threatening complications. Influenza symptoms can come on quickly and include:
- Dry cough
- Sore throat
- Nasal congestion
- Body aches / tiredness