Flu is on the upswing in Illinois along with most of the rest of the nation.
368 people have been admitted to intensive care units with the flu this season and 27 have died, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.
U.S. health officials say the strain of influenza virus going around this year has been linked to more hospital admissions and deaths.
The majority of flu-related deaths have been patients in their 50s, 60s and elderly, according to the State Health Department.
St. Joseph’s hospital in Breese has begun restricting visitors to the hospital in the wake of the increased flu activity. The hospital asks that if you have flu-like symptoms, do not visit. Use alcohol hand gel, tissues and masks which are available at entrances.
It isn’t too late to get a flu shot, and there’s no shortage of flu vaccine. This year’s vaccine is a good match for the viruses circulating this year, one indication of how well the vaccine should work. People should first contact their doctors or other health care providers. Many drug stores also provide flu vaccine.
Illinois is among 29 states reporting high flu activity.