Flu activity "widespread" in Nebraska, according to CDC

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Flu season is underway and health officials continue to stress the importance of getting the flu vaccine.

Right now, flu activity in Nebraska is worse than all the surrounding states.

According to the Weekly US Map: Influenza Summary Update from the CDC, Nebraska is now listed with "widespread" flu activity for the week ending December 22, 2018- Week 51.

It was previously listed as regional.

There are ten states and the territory of Guam that are listed with "widespread" flu activity.

You can look at the full report from the Nebraska influenza surveillance system: HERE.

The Nebraska influenza surveillance system is a collaborative effort between DHHS and its many partners in the state including, local health departments, public health and clinical laboratories, vital statistics offices, healthcare providers, clinics and emergency departments.

Indicators from Nebraska’s influenza surveillance systems (laboratory testing, sentinel provider visits, influenza hospitalizations, emergency department visits, and school absences due to illness) showed that influenza cases are circulating widely across the state.

Health officials say the single best way to prevent seasonal flu is to get vaccinated each year, but good health habits like covering your cough and washing your hands often can help stop the spread of germs and prevent respiratory illnesses like the flu. There also are flu antiviral drugs that can be used to treat and prevent the flu.