Flu season is in full swing, and according to the national influenza surveillance report, flu activity is elevated and will continue to increase.

West Virginia is one of the many states labeled by the CDC as having “widespread” flu activity. According to their report, seasonal flu activity in the U.S. has been elevated for the past 8 weeks and continues to increase.

The WV Office of Epidemiology and Prevention Services noted that at this point in flu season, nearly 5% of all doctor’s visits are related to influenza-like illness (ILI). The surveillance report also noted that this number might not, in fact, represent the population accurately as a whole, since the holiday season likely affected healthcare-seeking behaviors in those who had symptoms through the end of December and the beginning of January.

“Influenza-like Illness (ILI) is definitely up throughout the region,” said Carol Weare with Valley Health. “It’s not too late to get a flu shot.”

At Valley Health hospital, when the flu is up, it’s possible that they might institute visitation restrictions for those who might be infected. However, Weare said that as of right now, there are no official visiting restrictions, but she said that people should just execute good common sense.

“We are opting (at least for now) to urge those with symptoms to stay away, everyone to wash hands, practice good ‘respiratory etiquette’ (sneeze or cough into your sleeve if you don’t have a tissue, etc.),” Weare explained.

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