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Widespread flu activity reported in Iowa and Minnesota

The flu has hit the U.S. hard this year, as a good majority of the country is seeing widespread flu activity this season

Posted: Feb 21, 2020 2:36 AM
Updated: Feb 21, 2020 8:56 AM

MASON CITY, Iowa - If you've been feeling under the weather this winter, you're not alone.

In the latest Influenza Reports, the Departments of Health in Iowa and Minnesota are reporting widespread flu activity. In addition, a good majority of the U.S. is seeing similar activity, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

While Minnesota is seeing influenza A be the more dominant strain, Iowa is largely seeing influenza B.

Becky Higgins gets her flu shot yearly, as well as her two kids. A week after her daughter received the vaccine, she got sick a week later, and while taking care of her, Becky herself caught the flu.

"It was the body aches, the chills, the hot the next minute, the sweats. Lots of body aches."

"When I had the achy influenza, I was down for probably 5-6 days."

This year, the flu is spreading at her childrens' school.

"I did get an email from the school the other day that if your kid was sick, or their daily routine was going to be changing in any way, to call the office, not just email the teacher. Because they were having a lot of teachers that were out due to the flu."

She's also noticed that the flu is becoming a common nuisance.

"I don't really get sick often. But I have had the achy influenza the past two years, and I hardly ever get sick."

Jennifer Stiles with CG Public Health says there has been an uptick in flu cases across Cerro Gordo County.

"We do active disease surveillance and through that, we get information from the schools and clinics."

She notes that influenza impacts everyone differently.

"Just because people have one symptom, that doesn't mean they have to have all symptoms of influenza to have influenza."

If you are questioning whether you have the flu, Stiles says to remember the acronym 'FACTS.'

"think of the fever, aches, chills, tiredness and maybe even a sore throat."

If you have yet to receive a flu shot, CG Public Health has plenty of vaccine left for the remainder of the season.

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