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15 NEW FLU DEATHS REPORTED IN NORTH CAROLINA

State health officials said Thursday there were 15 new flu deaths in North Carolina last week, bringing the total for this season to 114.

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This year’s influenza season has been especially bad, with reported deaths well ahead of where they were at this time in either the 2012-2013 or 2013-2014 seasons.

Health officials say flu deaths often occur among people with weakened immune systems, but the H3n2 flu strain has been the dominant strain this season, and the current vaccine is less effective against it than other strains.

While that makes the shots less effective, experts still recommend getting vaccinated.

Other simple precautions can help keep you from getting sick: Wash your hands and avoid contact with the ill. Health officials also urge anyone developing symptoms to stay home from work or school to slow the spread.

Get more information at www.flu.nc.gov.

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