YORK COUNTY, S.C. — We’re now in the peak of flu season, and the deadly virus is spreading rapidly.
Since September, there’s been a total of 21 flu-related deaths across the Carolinas.
Compared to this time last year, the number of cases in North Carolina is declining, but in South Carolina, not so much.
The CDC recently announced the Palmetto State is one of nine states with a spike in flu activity.
Specifically, in York County, the Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) said flu cases have spiked since this time last year and even in the last week with daily diagnoses.
“We just had two cases of flu yesterday (Wednesday) morning,” said Dr. Saumya Mehta.
Mehta is a doctor at a family practice in Fort Mill. She said the best way to overcome the contagious virus is by getting the flu shot.
The vaccine takes about two weeks to kick in, but once it does, there’s a 60 percent chance you’ll be protected.
“60 percent is a big deal when it comes to fighting protection,” said Mehta.
That's because this season’s vaccine has been upgraded to fight against different strains of the flu -- compared to last year which only had a 25 percent effectiveness rate.
You may remember around this time last year, several hospitals around the Charlotte area restricted children from visitation as the flu spread across the region.
As of now, local hospitals are not planning any restrictions due to the flu.