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North Dakotans urged to get flu shot as cases rise

Nationwide, and in North Dakota, there has been an increase in influenza in recent weeks, according to the North Dakota Department of Health and Human Services, which said the increase in influenza cases has happened in conjunction with an early increase in other respiratory viruses, especially among children.

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The North Dakota Department of Health and Human Services is urging North Dakotans 6 months and older to get flu shots.
File photo.
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BISMARCK — The North Dakota Department of Health and Human Services is encouraging all North Dakotans to get vaccinated against influenza.

Nationwide, and in North Dakota, there has been an increase in influenza in recent weeks, according to HHS, which said the increase in influenza cases has happened in conjunction with an early increase in other respiratory viruses, especially among children.

Children younger than age 5, individuals with certain chronic medical conditions, those who are pregnant, American Indians and those older than 65 are at higher risk of developing serious complications from influenza.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported two child deaths in the United States due to influenza this season.

HHS is encouraging everyone ages six months and older should act now and get vaccinated.

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Influenza vaccination rates are lower this season than past seasons for both adults and children.

Influenza most commonly causes fever, cough, sore throat, headache, chills and body aches. In North Dakota, influenza activity begins to increase in the fall and typically peaks between January and March.

A total of 182 influenza cases have already been reported in the state for the 2022-23 season, as well as four influenza-related hospitalizations.

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