CDC: Flu season getting worse, outbreaks hit nearly every state - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

CDC: Flu season getting worse, outbreaks hit nearly every state

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

As the flu spreads, doctors warn we could be in for the worst season in a decade. According to the Centers for Disease Control, there is widespread flu activity in 46 states including both Carolinas.

So if you're not prepared for cold and flu season and by that, doctors mean you got a flu shot, then you could very well be on borrowed time.

WBTV photographer, Shaun Donithan, who caught the flu from his girlfriend knows that all too well.

"Still had the sweats, still felt bad but I wasn't aching all over like she was," he recalled.

The difference between them? Donithan actually got a flu shot and doctors say that made is bout with the flu shorter and less severe.

"Oh I would have been hurtin'," said Donithan. "I mean, I wouldn't have been able to do anything."

Dr. Richard Elsey works the Concentra urgent care in SouthEnd and has diagnosed more than a dozen cases since New Year's.

He said they've struggled to keep flu test kits in stock.

"We've run out of our actually our influenza tests cases and actually had to get Fed Ex-ed in every two days to keep up with the demand," said Dr. Elsey.

Normally, doctors don't see this kind of demand until February. This time around, though cases spiked in November; problem is flu season runs until March.

All the more reason, said Dr. Elsey to still get your flu shot.

"If you get the flu shot now, you'll be protected within two weeks so you can still avoid getting the flu later on in the season," he said.

Don't believe him? Take it from Donithan who had this to say about not getting vaccinated.

"You crazy," he said. "I would say you gotta get your flu shot."

The CDC reports more than 5 percent of the population has the flu right now. That's more than 15 million people. Compare that to last year, when just 6 million got the flu.

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