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Slow Start To Flu Season

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Flu season is getting a late start in Minnesota, and the state department of health is hoping people will take advantage and get their vaccination before it hits. 
 
Outbreaks and hospitalizations are down significantly from last year, when 12 schools had announced high rates of the flu, and there were 30 people who went in for flu-related symptoms.

But doctors say the first wave will come eventually.
 
Dr. John Benson with Mankato Clinic says, "Flu cases tend to alternate a bit. Bad winters, good winters, bad winters, good winters. This means there's a slow start, but id doesn't mean it can explode in a hurry."

There was a big bush for vaccination this year, and it came with protections for four strains of the virus.

But Dr. Benson says it is more of a roll of the dice.

And the same rules of good hygiene and getting the vaccination apply in the effort to protect those vulnerable to the disease.

Dr. Benson says, "For reasonably aged folks, the flu is not going to kill anybody. It's going to ruin a week of your life. There might be a couple of days where maybe you wished you were dead. It's the very young and very old who have trouble. It's a good idea to have good hygiene, but it's even a better idea to get the vaccine. One of the things I tell parents is to get vaccinated, not necessarily for themselves, but for their young children."

There have been zero deaths so far from the flu, and Mankato has yet to see a hospitalization.