New Mexico health agency: Flu activity widespread in state

The prevalence of flu has continued to rise in North Carolina since the middle of January, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.

Since January, the state's department of health says flu-related hospitalizations have tripled.

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The OSDH reports that 1,664 people have been hospitalized during the flu season that began September 1, 2016, 116 of those in the last week. All 16 deaths were reported to be adults, the first time in three weeks that there was no pediatric death from the flu. It's not too late to get a flu vaccine. Randolph County's health director Susan Hayes confirmed one flu-related death occurred last week. The health district reported that young children have been hit particularly hard this year, with five pediatric deaths reported across the state. The rate for those ages 50 to 64 years is 32.8 per 100,000, while children under 5 years are now hospitalized for the flu at a rate of 20.8 per 100,000. They do not apply to anyone seeking treatment at the hospitals.

The department says the flu vaccine is very effective this season. Signs to watch for include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headaches, chills and fatigue. In these instances, parents and guardians should work with their nurse to make arrangements.

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Police Chief Michael Harrison says one person in custody and that he is being investigated for driving while intoxicated. It was just a few feet from where she stood when it struck a teen or man who looked "young, college-aged", she said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported in February that the flu vaccine protects about half the people who receive it - better than in some years but not as good as in others.

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