More than a dozen Colo. long-term care facilities hit by flu outbreak

Photo: Flu shot
Flu shots are recommended for everybody six months or older.

Fourteen of the state’s long-term care facilities have seen outbreaks of the flu this season, according to the state health department. So far, 95 people from 17 Colorado counties have been hospitalized due to flu.

Most of the outbreaks and hospitalizations have been caused by the influenza A virus, said state epidemiologist Dr. Lisa Miller. That virus often leads to a more severe flu season, which can mean more flu-related hospitalizations and deaths.

“The main sub-type or strain of flu that’s circulating is H3N2," says Dr. Miller. "This can be a strain that’s particularly hard on the very young and very old and people with underlying health conditions.”

Miller urges people to get a flu shot, avoid sick people and wash hands frequently.

Also, she says those who get sick should be proactive and contact their health provider because anti-viral medications can help.