Flu Fears Continue To Spread Across DFW

CBS Dallas Fort Worth (RSS)

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - For the first time this season, Collin County and Hunt County are reporting flu-related deaths. A total of 34 people in North Texas have now died after flu-related complications.

Most of those deaths have been in Dallas County. So, at the Dallas County commissioners meeting on Tuesday, health officials are set to give an updated about the current flu outbreak, and what else can be done to prevent the flu from spreading. Medical professionals will also be talking about West Nile Virus.

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Meanwhile, in Arlington, firefighters are battling the flu by spreading awareness. Emergency workers have been going door-to-door to deliver the city’s public health message, which involves a three-C strategy.

- CLEAN your hands.

- COVER your coughs and sneezes.

- CONTAIN the virus by keeping ill people at home.

Some businesses in the Arlington area have even posted signs, available in three languages. “It’s been amazing,” stated Lee Tovar with the Arlington Fire Department. “They think it’s great we’re getting involved in the community. Citizens love it, especially now that it’s available in Spanish, English and Vietnamese.”

Nearly 2,000 cases of the flu have been reported to hospitals across North Texas, and that does not even count people battling the flu who have not seen doctor. Medical professionals say that there is no shortage of the flu vaccine, so it is not too late for those who have yet to get one this season.

But you will want to hurry. Demand for the flu vaccine is extremely high, and some families have said that finding one — even though there is no shortage  — has been challenging. “It was very difficult,” said Diego Zapata. “It’s not easy. We looked at many places.” This past weekend, in Plano, about 1,000 people waited in line to get a free flu shot. But there were only 650 doses available.

Area school districts are also joining the flu fight. The Northwest Independent School District is hosting a flu clinic on Tuesday at the district’s administration building in Justin. And the Carroll Independent School District will be hosting its second flu shot clinic of the season on Wednesday, also at the district’s administration building.

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