Flu cases surging in many areas

Published: Oct. 31, 2022 at 5:33 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Flu season has ramped up early in the U.S., and our region is no exception.

The CDC says it’s been more than a decade since flu season hospitalization rates have been this high at this time of year nationwide. In Vermont hospitalization rates for emergency room and urgent care visits for the flu and flu-like illness are higher than in the last three years.

Experts say getting the flu shot is still the best way to protect yourself, and the best time to do it is now. “if we’re seeing an early flu season, we would hope that that means later in the winter it might be a bit milder. But you really can’t predict that and the best prevention measure to help you keep from getting the flu is to get your flu vaccine,” said Laura Ann Nicolai, Vermont’s deputy epidemiologist.

Experts say it takes about two weeks for the flu vaccine to be effective and say that if you plan on gathering this holiday season, the sooner you get your shot, the better.