6 Die as Severe Flu Season Strikes Washoe County - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

6 Die as Severe Flu Season Strikes Washoe County

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The flu has claimed the lives of six Washoe County residents in the past three days. And officials say it's just a more severe season than last year.

"The flu is a serious disease," says Washoe County Health District Epidemiologist, Dr. Randall Todd. "People get it every year; they get sick from it every year and they die from it every year. And they need to take it seriously and get vaccinated. You can't get the flu from the vaccination. Some people think they can but you can't."

Todd also says that while the strain of flu we are seeing this year is generally one that affects the young and the old, this year it is claiming the lives of those in the prime of their lives.

"Five of the six residents who have died have been between 35 and 55 and that's when you expect people to be in their best shape for fighting this off. But those it's claimed have had weakened systems from chronic diseases like diabetes, and obesity and C.O.P.D."

He also says that in addition to being vaccinated, we should all wash our hands, and cough into our elbows to keep from spreading the germs.

"Even if you don't get a vaccination for yourself, it can help keep from spreading the disease to your children or your parents or those in the community who are most at risk," says Katie Nannini with Immunize Nevada. "So we feel everyone should get a flu shot every year."

In fact Immunize Nevada also hosts a website called InfluenceNevada.org. where you can type in your zip code and find pharmacies and clinics near you that offer them. And Immunize Nevada will be holding a flu shot clinic next Tuesday from 4-7 p.m. at the Boys and Girls Club of Truckee Meadows on E. Ninth Street in Reno. They are asking for a $20 donation for the vaccinations but say that no one will be turned away for an inability to pay.

For more information check out their websites.



Written by Erin Breen  

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