First case of flu reported in Greene County

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - The Springfield-Greene County Health Department says the first case of flu in the county this season was reported last week.

So far, that’s the only reported case.

Greene County averages about 950 reported cases per year, according to the health department. Last year, however, there were more than 2,100 reported cases.

“Everyone should get their flu shot ages six months and older,” Greene County administrator of health and epidemiology Kendra Findley said. “Try to get it before the end of October, but really there's no bad time to get it.

Findley says Australia had more than double their average number of flu cases in their season this year.

“That tells us that we really need to get that flu vaccine because it may be a bad flu year,” she said.

It’s also important to remember that the vaccine also helps those around you, since you’re reducing your chance of spreading the disease.

“If you were to take the influenza virus home, you might have the common seven-day illness, whereas someone else in your household would have a much more significant disease that could be life threatening,” Cox Health registered nurse Suzi Seely said. “Our goal is to prevent illness for everyone in your family.”

“It's really more [than] an annoyance,” Findley said. “If you get influenza, you're going to be sick for five-to-seven days, so you're going to lose that much time from work and school. Again, get that vaccine. It's quick, it's easy, it's affordable.”