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This season's flu epidemic is taking a heavy toll on children. The latest data from the Centers for Disease Control shows 16 more kids died from the flu last week.>> Take necessary precautions and just encourage hand washing.>> Parents in this close-knit community of Columbus, Indiana are still in shock after seven-year-old Savannah Jessie passed away on Thursday, possibly due to complications related to influenza B.
She's one of 53 children who have died since the flu season began in October. With the number of flu cases rising, doctors are reporting shortages of antiviral medications like Tamiflu and an uptake in hospitalizations. A frustrated nurse in Pensacola, Florida recorded this YouTube flu warning that now has more than 3 million views.
>> A cesspool of funky flu at the Right now. So, please don't bring your team in. Please don't bring your healthy children, especially your newborn babies.>> And at Atlanta's Grady Memorial Hospital, which has been overwhelmed by the H3N2 virus, staff have quarantined new flu patients in this separate mobile waiting room typically reserved for disasters like hurricanes.
While the flu vaccine is only 34% effective against the most dominant strain of the virus in the US, health officials are still urging everyone to get their shots. They say the flu season's peak is still two to three weeks away, and getting vaccinated could prevent future infections and lower the severity of the symptoms.