Influenza cases in Arizona exceed 19,000

The Arizona Department of Health Services has published the latest statistics on influenza activity in the state. To date there have been 19,080 confirmed cases of the flu across the state for the current flu season. As of January 2019 the season total was 5,723.

Graham County has reported 279 confirmed cases for the season, up from 68 in January. Greenlee County has reported 79 cases and Cochise County has reported 505 confirmed cases for the season. More than 30% of the cases reported fall into the 5 to 18-year-old demographic.

Between January and April, 13,357 influenza cases have been reported. According to the Department of Health Services, these cases represent a small proportion of the true number of influenza cases. Many people do not visit the doctor when ill and doctors do not run tests on all patients exhibiting flu-like symptoms.

A Graham County family reported that two children in the household came down with the flu and were prescribed Tamiflu. The other family members were also prescribed Tamiflu to reduce the chances of contracting the illness. No other family members came down with the flu.

Health officials say that the best deterrent for the flu is a flu shot.