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Flu case confirmed locally

The local health unit has received its first lab-confirmed case of influenza in a Quinte West resident.
A lab-confirmed case, the health unit notes, confirms the influenza virus is present in local communities.
“Influenza viruses are common and expected every year,” says Stephanie McFaul, communicable disease manager with the Hastings & Prince Edward Counties Health Unit.  “The best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from getting ill is to get your flu shot every year. You should also stay home when you’re sick, cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your sleeve, and wash your hands often.”

Influenza is a contagious respiratory illness that causes mild to severe illness. People of any age can get the flu. Illness usually lasts from two to seven days and sometimes longer in the elderly or people with chronic diseases.  Symptoms vary from person to person, but can include fever, chills, cough, runny eyes, stuffy nose, sore throat,
headache, muscle aches, and extreme weakness and fatigue.  Children may also experience ear aches, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

Some people, such as older adults, young children and those with certain health conditions, are at higher risk for serious flu complications.

Flu shots are free and are available to anyone over six months of age who lives, works or attends school in Ontario. Flu shots are given at any of the health unit’s regular immunization clinics.  Many doctors also offer flu shots in their offices and clinics.

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