KHQ MD ALERT: Flu Hits Peak Levels In Washington - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

KHQ MD ALERT: Flu Hits Peak Levels In Washington

  • Also on KHQ.comMore>>

  • KHQMD

    KHQMD

    KHQMD - presented by Rockwood Clinic and Deaconess Medical Center - Your Health, Right Now>>
    KHQMD - presented by Rockwood Clinic and Deaconess Medical Center - Your Health, Right Now>>

OLYMPIA, Wash. - The flu has reached its peak, and 19 lab-confirmed flu deaths have been reported across the state since December. Only lab-confirmed flu deaths are reportable in the state, and many cases aren’t lab tested, so the actual toll of flu is likely higher.

“The flu can be a serious disease,” said Dr. Kathy Lofy, interim state health officer. “People of all ages can get very sick. Getting vaccinated is the best protection and can help people avoid severe illness, hospitalization, and even death.”

The virus is widespread in Washington. Most confirmed flu cases across the nation and in our state have been the 2009 H1N1 strain, which is covered by this season’s flu vaccine. A flu vaccination is recommended for everyone six months and older. It’s especially important for people at high risk for complications from flu, including young children, pregnant women, people 65 and older, and people with certain medical conditions — such as asthma, heart disease, diabetes, and neurologic conditions.

Nationally, estimates from November showed that less than 40 percent of the population had been vaccinated against flu, leaving a lot of people unprotected. To best protect people and communities from flu, 80 percent or more must be vaccinated — that’s the national goal.

The state health department produced a public service announcement and online ads with Washington families talking about why they get a flu shot and encouraging others to do so. The statewide flu prevention ads will run online, on the radio, and in social media through February. Radio ads will air on stations in the Seattle, Vancouver, Spokane, Yakima, and Tri-Cities areas.

Produced public service announcements and other flu resources and materials can be found on the Department of Health flu news Web pages.

If you haven’t gotten your flu vaccine, now is the time. It takes two weeks after vaccination to be protected. We expect flu to circulate in our state for several more weeks. Kids under nine years old may need two doses about a month apart. You can get vaccinated at many locations, including health care provider offices, pharmacies, and some local health agencies. Check the flu vaccine finder to find out where to get flu vaccine in your community.

Many people with flu have a fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, body aches, and fatigue. Antiviral medication can help. It must be prescribed by a doctor and it works best if started within two days of getting sick. It’s especially important for persons at high risk for flu complications to start treatment right away.

The Washington State Department of Health buys flu vaccine for all kids through age 18. Kids can get the vaccine from their regular health care provider. Providers may charge an office visit fee and an administration fee to give the vaccine. People who can’t afford the administration fee can ask to have it waived.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • PHOTOS: Westbound I-90 at Ellensburg back open after 16 vehicle crash

    PHOTOS: Westbound I-90 at Ellensburg back open after 16 vehicle crash

    Saturday, February 17 2018 5:23 PM EST2018-02-17 22:23:29 GMT

    CLE ELUM, Wash. - UPDATE: Washington State Department of Transportation says I-90 at Ellensburg is back open following a major crash Saturday morning. Westbound lanes were closed for several hours Saturday. Washington State Patrol urges drivers to use caution as conditions can change quickly.

    >>

    CLE ELUM, Wash. - UPDATE: Washington State Department of Transportation says I-90 at Ellensburg is back open following a major crash Saturday morning. Westbound lanes were closed for several hours Saturday. Washington State Patrol urges drivers to use caution as conditions can change quickly.

    >>
  • Family left high and dry after Trader Tots consignment store's surprise closure

    Family left high and dry after Trader Tots consignment store's surprise closure

    Saturday, February 17 2018 1:17 AM EST2018-02-17 06:17:14 GMT

    POST FALLS, Idaho - Billie Swanson has her hands full. Taking care of two boys could be a full-time job. “Kids grow in and out of stuff so quickly and it's a nice place to go and to have that option and some extra money in our pockets,” Swanson said. Swanson is taking about Trader Tots Consignment Store in Post Falls. It’s a place she’s gone to in the past to sell her kids old clothes and buy new ones. That is, until recently. “They 

    >>

    POST FALLS, Idaho - Billie Swanson has her hands full. Taking care of two boys could be a full-time job. “Kids grow in and out of stuff so quickly and it's a nice place to go and to have that option and some extra money in our pockets,” Swanson said. Swanson is taking about Trader Tots Consignment Store in Post Falls. It’s a place she’s gone to in the past to sell her kids old clothes and buy new ones. That is, until recently. “They 

    >>
  • North Idaho man tries to make off with 40 ft long poles

    North Idaho man tries to make off with 40 ft long poles

    Saturday, February 17 2018 12:11 AM EST2018-02-17 05:11:05 GMT
    Kootenai County Sheriff's OfficeKootenai County Sheriff's Office

    KOOTENAI COUNTY, Idaho. - The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office arrested 47-year-old Brett K. Anderson of Post Falls, ID Thursday after he was reported to have been hitting on-coming cars with a large poles sticking out of his own vehicle in the area of N. Meyer Rd. and Hayden Ave. When deputies arrived on scene, they discovered Anderson had stolen stole several 30-40’ long pieces of irrigation pipe from a nearby farm field and was 

    >>

    KOOTENAI COUNTY, Idaho. - The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office arrested 47-year-old Brett K. Anderson of Post Falls, ID Thursday after he was reported to have been hitting on-coming cars with a large poles sticking out of his own vehicle in the area of N. Meyer Rd. and Hayden Ave. When deputies arrived on scene, they discovered Anderson had stolen stole several 30-40’ long pieces of irrigation pipe from a nearby farm field and was 

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Spokane woman's minivan stolen with father's ashes inside

    Spokane woman's minivan stolen with father's ashes inside

    Saturday, February 17 2018 9:39 PM EST2018-02-18 02:39:34 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Diana Reinholt's  had her entire life in her van. She was also living in it after being evicted from her home earlier this month. Inside the stolen van are her father's ashes and pictures of her family.  "I just broke down. I just immediately started crying," said Diana.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Diana Reinholt's  had her entire life in her van. She was also living in it after being evicted from her home earlier this month. Inside the stolen van are her father's ashes and pictures of her family.  "I just broke down. I just immediately started crying," said Diana.

    >>
  • Spokane Police needs public's help investigating drive-by purse snatchings

    Spokane Police needs public's help investigating drive-by purse snatchings

    Saturday, February 17 2018 9:22 PM EST2018-02-18 02:22:01 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police are investigating three purse snatching incidents that happened Saturday afternoon around the city. In all three incidents a silver Pontiac G6 drove up next to a victim as she was walking and an occupant grabs their purse from the car. Police say in all three incidents there was a physical struggle between the women and the purse snatcher. 

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police are investigating three purse snatching incidents that happened Saturday afternoon around the city. In all three incidents a silver Pontiac G6 drove up next to a victim as she was walking and an occupant grabs their purse from the car. Police say in all three incidents there was a physical struggle between the women and the purse snatcher. 

    >>
  • Deputies: Florida woman ‘just out of rehab' had open 12-pack of beer, child in car

    Deputies: Florida woman ‘just out of rehab' had open 12-pack of beer, child in car

    Saturday, February 17 2018 8:27 PM EST2018-02-18 01:27:10 GMT

     WELLINGTON, Fla. - A Florida woman was arrested Thursday after deputies said she drove intoxicated with a child sitting above an open case of beer tucked in the back seat. The Palm Beach Post reports that a deputy pulled over 30-year-old Stephanie Roque of Miami about 11 a.m. after she made a complete stop in her SUV in the center of a lane. The deputy said that Roque’s drivers license was suspended, and noticed she had a strong smell of alcohol coming from her car.

    >>

     WELLINGTON, Fla. - A Florida woman was arrested Thursday after deputies said she drove intoxicated with a child sitting above an open case of beer tucked in the back seat. The Palm Beach Post reports that a deputy pulled over 30-year-old Stephanie Roque of Miami about 11 a.m. after she made a complete stop in her SUV in the center of a lane. The deputy said that Roque’s drivers license was suspended, and noticed she had a strong smell of alcohol coming from her car.

    >>