Flu cases rising in Tennessee

Local pharmacist says numbers keep climbing in Chattanooga

HIXSON, Tenn. (WDEF) — Tennessee is one of seven states in America currently seeing a surge in flu cases, according to the CDC.

American Family Care says safety measures during the pandemic reduced flu exposure.

But with most restrictions lifted, it’s a “perfect set-up for increased transmission.”

“For those ages greater than 65 there [are] specific formulations of vaccines you should get and it dramatically reduces the likelihood of hospitalizations and deaths,” said Dr. Michael Phillips, Chief Medical Epidemiologist at NYU Langone.

Recent data from the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases shows that only half of American adults are planning to receive a shot.

Access Family Pharmacy’s Jake Standefer says cases have noticeably been on the rise in Chattanooga and the shot offers the best protection against the flu during the height of its impact.

“It’s just one of the best things you can do to stay healthy,” Standefer said. “Influenza cases are still one of the top ten leading causes of death in the United States. Anything we can do to try to mitigate that is definitely a good thing.”

The folks at the AFC also recommend receiving a flu shot to prevent a “twindemic.”

This could result in numerous people having both COVID and the flu at the same time.

“It’s been going on around here for about a month now,” Standefer said. “It seems like the cases are definitely picking up a little bit more. [You] don’t need an appointment. Most major insurances cover a flu shot just because they feel it’s very important to get [to] help keep patients out of the hospital and keep them healthy.”

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