Flu cases spike in Alabama

Flu cases are up six percent this week, and children and the elderly are the most at risk of getting sick.

Posted: Feb 1, 2019 5:07 PM
Updated: Feb 1, 2019 5:48 PM

Flu cases are up about six percent in Alabama this week.

According to the Alabama Department of Public Health, one child in Alabama died from the flu within the past week. A local pediatrician, Dr. Joann Johnson, said she has diagnosed a high number of flu cases throughout January.

"For a small clinic like ours, about ten cases a day. That's forty to fifty a week, so there is a lot of disease in the community right now," said Johnson.

Johnson said children and elderly people are more prone to the flu, and it can become deadly in as little as 48 hours.

"During our sick clinics, almost everyone with a fever in the last two or three weeks has had Influenza A," she said. "It seems like a needless death. It really is a needless death, if it could have been prevented by a simple flu vaccine."

Johnson said the flu is so prevalent right now, it's even affecting her own family.

"My own father-in-law was admitted into Crestwood this last weekend when he got the flu in his nursing home, and they thought he was going to die Sunday night. Luckily, he pulled through, but he is 90," Johnson said.

She said she is thankful he survived.

"He's doing okay. He has actually back at the nursing home. It was a real scare," she said.

Even though Johnson understands why some people are scared of vaccines, she said you should try to stick through the pain.

"I hate needles. I hate to take shots, but I take mine every year now," she said.

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