LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - The influenza season has already happened half a world away in Australia, and it has health officials in the United States preparing for a bad outbreak.
Cases have been diagnosed in Fayette County, Kentucky and the city of Louisville is already seeing a few people test positive just within the past week.
We look to Australia to predict what will happen here, since their winter flu season happens during our summer. Australia was hit particularly hard this year. Australian health experts warn that the flu season was longer in duration and there were more diagnosed cases than the previous record year in 2017.
Doctors at Norton Healthcare say before flu season hits full force, there is the flu vaccine season. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone be vaccinated before the end of October to allow for the antibodies to build immunity in their system, which takes about two weeks.
The CDC recommends that everyone over 6 months old get a flu shot. Children receiving their very first flu shot will need two doses spaced four weeks apart.
If a child under nine has received only one flu shot in his or her lifetime, that child also will need two doses. That means these children should get their first dose as soon as possible.
For more information on the upcoming flu season and how to prepare, visit Norton Healthcare’s website here.