The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services says the state is experiencing a moderate level of flu cases.

The latest state data shows a dip in flu cases, with more than 600, compared to the previous week’s 1,200 cases. With that said, an increase in the number of people admitted to the hospital for flu-like symptoms slightly increased in the most recent state information.

Fourteen flu-associated deaths were reported during the one-week period.

Eastern Missouri has the highest number of overall flu cases, followed by southeast Missouri.

The holidays tend to be a popular time for an increase in the flu bug.

Safeguards health experts 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.

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