Severe Flu Strain Hits Elderly the Hardest

The flu has hit America with full force. Major cities, like Boston, have declared a public health emergency. Pennsylvania's The Patriot-News reported that a flu strain has descended on the central Harrisburg area, with older people affected especially hard.

H3N2 - The Most Prevalent Strain

Health specialist have urged people to get a flu shot. The most prevalent strain, H3N2, is one that is associated with severe flu seasons and also tends to cause severe illness in older people. However, the strain is among those covered by this year's batch of flu vaccine.

Within two weeks 3,193 confirmed flu cases have been reported by the Pennsylvania Department of Health, representing nearly 1,000 more than the prior week.  "That is a lot more flu than what is reported at this time in past seasons," the health department noted.

30 States Face Flu Outbreak

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported widespread flu outbreaks in Pennsylvania and 30 other states since December 22. 10 % of doctor visits during the week have been related to the flu or flu-like illness, about four times as many as normal.

Assisted Living and Continuing Care Residences have many successful measures in place to prevent the outbreak of the flu.