Health officials advise getting flu shot despite already having

Yuma

Health officials advise getting flu shot despite already having been sick

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YUMA, AZ (13 On Your Side) - The flu is now widespread throughout the country.

In Yuma county, there's been three confirmed deaths. Imperial County has reported one flu death. 

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu strain that's causing many of these deaths may be the H1N1 virus that caused the 2009 pandemic - affecting healthy children and young adults. 

"The influenza vaccine covers for three types of viruses every year."

April parsons - infection preventionist with Yuma regional medical center - says that's why doctors stress the importance - for you to get your flu shot every year - you  never know what flu strain will get you sick. 

"The CDC tries to figure out which are going to be the most predominant viruses for the year and that's what they include for the vaccine."

According to the center for disease control and prevention - this year - the h1n1 strain - is the predominant flu virus that is getting everyone - across the country - sick.

In Yuma county alone -- three people under the age of 65 have died in the last six days -- including a child.
     
"in the beginning of the season they sent out 40 specimens to the state lab to be typed. And the majority of those came back positive for H1N1 and that's why we believe that's most of what we're seeing here."

 But - even if you've already gotten sick with the flu -- there are other strains of the flu virus that can still get you sick.  
So in order to lower the chances of you catching the potentially dangerous flu bug a second time - parson's recommends you get the flu shot - if you haven't done so this year. 

"I think that we all have an obligation to get the flu shot because we might be protecting someone else from us. Of we get the flu we could be spreading it to other people who have a weakened immune system even though we don't feel ill ourselves."