The flu is taking a toll nationwide and Oklahomans continue to suffer, including 45 who have died so far this year, according to the Oklahoma Health Department. In just the last week, officials say that 288 people had to be hospitalized due to the flu virus, bringing the total number of statewide hospitalizations to 1,141.
Health officials reported 3 deaths last week. Officials said 35 who have died so far this year were over 65 years old, and 10 were between 50 and 64 years old.
How do I prevent the spread of influenza?
Here are the key steps to protect yourself and your loved ones from influenza and other respiratory illnesses this cold and flu season.
- Stay home from work, school, and other public places if you are ill;
- Make “respiratory hygiene” a habit, including use of tissues to cover coughs and sneezes, then disposing of them and performing hand
hygiene immediately. When tissues are not readily available, use your sleeve, never your hands;
- Frequent hand hygiene using soap and water, or alcohol-based products such as hand gels when hands are not visibly soiled;
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone six months of age and older receive an influenza vaccine each year to protect against influenza. For more information about influenza vaccine click here.