The number of lab-positive flu cases in Missouri has jumped by 1,300 from the previous week. According to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, the state’s season total has reached more than 66,000 cases with the influenza A strain continuing to far outweigh the others. Influenza A is a kind that is generally responsible for a higher volume of flu cases.
Seventy-four influenza-associated deaths and 121 deaths involving pneumonia and influenza have been reported to the Bureau of Vital Records. The figures bring the season-to-date total to 888 pneumonia and influenza associated deaths statewide.
Fifty-four outbreaks of influenza or influenza-like illness and six influenza or influenza-associated school closures have been reported this season.
Northwest Missouri leads the state with 3,100 flu cases and eastern Missouri follows with 2,500 in the latest figures.
Safeguards health officials recommend include:
*Avoid close contact with sick people.
*Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after touching shared objects or surfaces such as door knobs, light switches, remote controls, shopping counters, debit card readers, etc. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
*Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
*Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
*Clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces.
*Stay home while you’re sick and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.