Marion County hospitals to temporarily restrict visitors due to high flu activity

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A total of 13 children have died so far this flu season.

"It's a different season, different profile".

Those in at-risk groups include people aged 65 and over, pregnant women and people with chronic illness.

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The CDC says early estimates show more people are being vaccinated this year, which could be one reason why this flu season isn't as bad as last year, but that could change.

Officials say there are many, many more people sick with influenza. (Lab-confirmed cases represent a small percentage of all flu cases, often just the ones that require hospitalization). This was mostly among children ages 0-4 years old.

"What I can tell you is that the people who have been hospitalized and the deaths that were associated with the flu this year are people who have not been immunized, a majority of them have not been immunized", said Dr. Jennifer Russell, chief medical officer of health for New Brunswick.

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Nor has CHEO seen the kind of spike in influenza-related hospitalizations among children being reported in other parts of the country, said spokesman Paddy Moore. H3N2, the strain largely responsible for last year's outbreak, has so far been less common than the H1N1 strain.

However, this year's flu vaccine is a good match for circulating strains and the vaccine is the best way to protect yourself from getting the flu.

According to officials, there is high flu activity throughout the state so it's important for those who have not yet gotten a flu shot-especially health care workers-to get one.

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That also goes for healthy adults who are in close contact with people in those groups or with babies under six months of age who are too young to be inoculated against influenza, she said. You can not get the flu from the flu shot, but immunity usually takes about two weeks to develop.

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