influenza

Central Florida is seeing a spike in flu cases. Florida Hospital’s urgent care Centra Care locations saw 1,200 cases last week.

The United States appears to be in the midst of an unusually severe flu season, officials at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday.

The flu season started early, which is never a good sign, and the flu is already widespread throughout the country, the CDC's latest report shows. Half of states are reporting especially intense flu activity.

Aja C. Holmes planned to go to work last week, but her flu symptoms — a cough, fever and severe body aches that worsened overnight — had other ideas.

"It felt like somebody took a bat and beat my body up and down," said Holmes, 39, who works as a residential life director at California State University, Sacramento. "I couldn't get out of bed."

The nation is having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad flu season.

The percentage of Florida’s population properly inoculated against the flu is far lower than federal health officials recommend, according to a new report.

The Sunshine State has the 12th lowest vaccination rate in the country.


This year, the flu season is expected to be among one of the worst to hit the United States.   

Influenza season is at its peak nationwide, and Florida is no exception. That's obvious on the map at the Centers for Disease Control website.

Pandemic flu, Ebola, Nipah virus. Emmie de Wit has held all of them in her hands (with three layers of gloves in between, of course).

She's a virologist working at the Rocky Mountain Laboratories in Hamilton, Montana. The 450-person facility, which is part of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is nestled in a town of 4,000. It's surrounded by mountains and national forests. Only one road passes through.

Sorry, kids. Your pediatrician will probably give you the flu vaccine in the form of a shot this year.

The American Academy of Pediatrics said Tuesday that it doesn't recommend using the flu vaccine that comes as a nasal spray. That's because the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked at its performance last year and concluded it wasn't up to snuff.

It came as a surprise this June when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended against using the nasal flu vaccine for the 2016-2017 flu season, citing a lack of evidence that it works.