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There are many weeks of flu activity left and the CDC continues to recommend getting a flu vaccine to help protect against influenza.

In recognition of National Influenza Vaccination Week, Dec. 2-8, the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) is reminding all North Dakotans of the importance of receiving the flu vaccine before the holidays. "Flu vaccination coverage estimates from past seasons have shown that few people get vaccinated against influenza after the end of November", according to the agency.

The flu was first observed in Europe, especially Spain - that's why it has been called the Spanish Flu.

Flu symptoms can include fever or feverish/chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headache, tiredness, and some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.

The Indiana State Department of Health is urging anyone, who hasn't received their flu shot yet, to get one now.

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Influenza activity is now at low levels in Montana; however, this is expected to change in the coming weeks.

In addition to the flu shot, other ways to reduce the risk of infection include frequent handwashing; coughing or sneezing into your sleeve, rather than into your hand; and staying home from work or school when you or your child are ill. Recently, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) released a report that more Americans were killed by the flu last year than at any time in 40 years. It may take about 1 to 4 days after being exposed to the virus for symptoms to develop. "The very young, pregnant women, elderly, and those with certain underlying health problems are at higher risk to have serious flu-related complications".

Moreover, flu shots can be administered any time during pregnancy.

Contrary to several popular myths, the injectable flu shot is healthy for most people with heart disease.