Officials provide tips to protect older adults from flu amid local uptick

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — According to the Ohio Department of Health, there’s a high rate of flu-like illnesses across the state, making the flu Ohio’s primary infectious disease threat.

The latest reports show more than 4,400 hospitalizations this season.

“Recently we’ve seen a dramatic rise in the number of flu hospitalizations throughout the state of Ohio, and it’s a little bit unusual this time of the year to see that high of a number,” said Dan Suffoletto of Public Health – Dayton & Montgomery County.

According to Suffoletto, it raises concern for elderly people who are more at risk of getting the virus. He said older adults are also at increased risk of complications from the flu.

“As you get older your immune system tends to weaken a little bit and then you can be more susceptible of things like pneumonia that can develop when you get the flu,” he said.

Officials advise older Ohioans and anyone who spends time with older adults to take steps to avoid getting and spreading the flu.

“You want to wash your hands thoroughly, you want to stay away from people who are sick. You want to cover your mouth when you cough and sneeze those items there can really go a long way to help preventing you from getting sick,” Suffoletto said.

According to officials, the flu shot should be your first line of defense, and if you haven’t already, it’s not too late to get one. Flu shots are available at Public Health for those who need it.

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