WINNEBAGO COUNTY (WTVO) –
While Chicago’s second Coronavirus diagnosis makes it seem the illness is at our doorstep, there’s another virus sweeping the Stateline.
“We will alert the public when we think the risks are significant, right now our risks in general are about seasonal influenza”, said Winnebago County’s Public Health Administrator, Sandra Martell.
Flu rates in Winnebago County are more than double what the Centers for Disease Control predicted they’d be. So far, over 900 flu cases have been reported, under 400 hundred were expected. In response hospitals are taking precautions, visitor restrictions are in place to try and combat the spread of the flu. While the new Coronavirus is a concern globally, in the Stateline preventing the flu is at the forefront. Winnebago County Public Health Administrator, Sandra Martell says she can’t stress enough the importance of getting the flu shot.
“Because they themselves may not be at risk fro becoming ill but they may expose others around them. Care takers of children, caretakers of the elderly. Those are important populations. So while we often say you may choose not to vaccinate, you’re protecting your population when you choose to vaccinate”, Martell explained.
It’s also important to practice the three C’s: Cleaning hands, covering coughs and containing germs by staying home when sick can keep the flu from spreading.