Flu season hits Indiana hard; 19 related deaths

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DANVILLE, Ind. (Jan. 23, 2014) This year’s flu season is hitting Hoosiers hard! The State Health Department is reporting 19 flu related deaths this year, but the flu season isn’t over. Emergency rooms across the state are also seeing a spike in patients coming in for treatment.

What’s scary with this flu season over others is the folks who are dying are, in *some* cases, healthy younger people. So, the point that doctors are trying get across is that you need to protect yourself, or you run the risk of getting very sick or even dying.

“Death is a possibility. It can hit some people that hard that no matter what we do for you, your body isn’t able to take it and you could potentially die,” said Dr. Samir Ginde, with Hendricks Regional Hospital in Danville.

Hearing that from a doctor of medicine is something that shouldn’t be taken lightly. What’s more, the demographics of the people getting seriously, if not deathly ill, is different this year. They were in their 30s and 40s, and not in that so-called “high risk” category of the elderly, the young or unhealthy. The flu this year is a really bad one.

“Most of the folks that we see coming through having severe illness have not gotten vaccinated. The vaccine doesn’t necessarily prevent the flu, but it diminishes symptoms so you don’t need to necessarily see your doctor, you don’t need to come to the hospital to get treated,” said Dr. Ginde.

If you don’t get the vaccine, it can put you in the position of becoming deathly ill. So, Dr. Ginde says get the vaccine if you want to protect yourself before the epidemic hits.

“You want to get it early to make sure you know you get it, because you don’t know if it’s coming in early January like it did this year or another year where it might come in early April.”

Other ways to protect yourself of course include the hand washing, also covering your cough…cough in to your elbow. Hand sanitizer is also a good protective measure.