Influenza cases running rampant in Cenla

ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - Urgent Care waiting rooms were full Saturday as the flu continues to hit Cenla hard this winter season.

Rapides Urgent Care Physician Praveen Budde said about 70 to 80 patients are testing positive for the flu each day.

He said that on Saturday morning 60 percent of the patients who walked in had flu symptoms.

But, Dr. Budde said having such a large number of positives so early in the season is unusual. Last year they did not see patients test positive for the flu until the end of January or early February.

Even if you already received the flu shot you can still catch the flu. He said the shot is only 40 to 60 percent effective.

However, Dr. Budde said you should still get your flu shot if you haven't because it can spare you from extreme flu symptoms.

"Definitely get a flu shot during the flu season," Dr. Budde said. "It helps prevent bad flu from coming on. Definitely stay away from people who have the flu, who are sick. Wash your hands, drink plenty of water, don't cough on anybody and don't share things. If you have anybody with flu in the house, make sure you try to prevent it. But, if you start feeling the symptoms get tested and go see the physician."

While the flu started in late November this year, they even had a few positives back in October.

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