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Flu season ramps up in Central Florida

Photo: Pixabay
Photo: Pixabay

Positive tests for the flu are up at hospitals across Central Florida.

The number of people testing positive for the flu at AdventHealth Centra Care has jumped by 60 percent this week compared to last. 

Medical Director Dr. Tim Hendrix says this isn't concerning despite the rise in cases. 

He says the flu never really went away this year, with case counts continuing to be high throughout last spring and summer. 

"So it's sort of been brewing in the background. And it doesn't surprise me that we're having an early season. It just seems like the spring flu never really went away and we're seeing an increase in activity as we get into the fall. This probably again because the baseline activity has been higher throughout the summer."

Hendrix says the easiest way to protect yourself against the flu is to get a vaccine.

“Personally, I was running a little late this year, trying to get my flu shot. So I just got my flu shot last week. And I'm thinking, you know, in the nick of time, because we are having that early season, but there's still time to go out there and get your flu shot, because that's the best protection against the flu."

As an added layer of protection, Hendrix says people can also wear a face mask around friends and family members who might be at a higher risk of complications from influenza.

Find a flu shot near you.

Danielle Prieur covers education in Central Florida.