AZ has the highest flu rate in the country

- While the flu is generally associated with cold and wet weather, the CDC says Arizona has the highest flu rate in the country.

The flu season in Arizona got off to a slow start, but even with the highest rate in the country we still haven't hit our peak.

"We've had 1,000 cases of the flu in Arizona since the beginning of the year since the beginning of the season it's been about 1,600 confirmed cases," said Dr. Salil Pradhan.

Experts say the flu vaccine is 59% effective this year, compared to being only 20% effective last year, but having a lower influenza rate.

"The pediatric vaccine rates in Arizona we have are pretty good, so there's no real reason we are seeing the rates we are right now," said Dr. Pradhan.

Pradhan says even though Arizona has the highest rate in the country this season is still mild, which is why they are expecting an increase of cases in the future.

"They're seeing about 130 to 140 patients a day, and probably about 20% of that is for the flu," said Pradhan.

So what do you do if you already have the flu.

"For most cases of the flu the best thing is what your grandma always taught you; always stay hydrated, try and eat enough, and take Tylenol or Motrin for fevers, there are medications available for the flu but we only recommend those if it's the early in the course and the first two days of illness," he said.

Pradhan says he recommends everyone older than 6 months get the flu shot, and particularly those over 65-years-old.

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