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Flu deaths have soared among those younger than 65 in the state, including two deaths in San Mateo County and five in Santa Clara County, according to county health officials.

Deb Minor, Yates County's public health director, said the county saw its first confirmed case on December 13 but since Christmas has seen a substantial increase, with 31 cases of influenza A and six of influenza B.

In addition, states across the country are reporting higher-than-average flu-related hospitalizations and emergency room visits.

Researchers from the University of Maryland, San Jose State University, Missouri Western State University and University of California, Berkeley contributed to this study funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health.

'We are fortunate to have a more comprehensive flu vaccination programme than in England, but each year the benefits for our community will only ever be realised if a high proportion of the groups who are eligible for vaccination take up the offer.

Since chronic kidney disease and dialysis patients already suffer fro weak imune systems, they are at a high risk of catching th flu, which could lead to feeling miserable, hospitalization - along with an increased risk of infections and medical errors - and even death in some.

"Started getting diarrhea; started coughing a lot more; (that's) what brought me back to the hospital", he said.

Those numbers come courtesy of the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC), which has been tracking the progress of the virus since flu season began back in October. Norman Edelman, senior scientific advisor for the American Lung Association. "Symptoms can range from mild to life-threatening".

"You're gonna put other people at risk, and they will be the very people who have the hardest time with it if they are put at risk", says Dr. Threlkeld.

"Even if you are not coughing, you can still infect other people", he added.

Because flu viruses mutate frequently, vaccines are reformulated each year to target the virus strains predicted to prevail during the coming fall and winter. And some protection is better than none.

Washington and Idaho are in the midst of what's likely to be the worst flu season since the 2009 swine flu pandemic.

"I think the simplest way to describe it is that flu is everywhere in the USA right now".

"By today, they were continually to get worse, so I know when you have the headaches that don't go away, there's something else going on", says Amanda Baker.

"If you have symptoms, immediately seek medical attention", Avetian said. With a cold, the symptoms tend to be less severe, and often include congestion, a runny nose, cough, and sore throat.

Don't spread the misery. And for the love of all things considerate, cover your mouth when you cough and sneeze.

Melissa Szarzynsai, infection control manager at Shore Medical Center, said she reminds her four children nearly hourly to wash their hands.