Remember the flu? The virus local health professionals want you to be worried about

SEATTLE – There’s a virus that’s spread across millions of people in more than 40 states in the U.S.  Remember? It’s the flu!

Gretchen Todd of Zoom+ Care in Downtown Seattle said, “It’s all ages, people with other illnesses, people without other illnesses. Influenza is dangerous.”

Flu activity is high in 41 states, according to the CDC that says more than 19 million people have gotten sick with the flu.

“It continues to be an epidemic each year of influenza, and the deaths related to influenza,” said Todd, Physician Assistant. “The coronavirus is not something you get passing by or touching the grocery cart. In order to get coronavirus, you need to be within six feet of someone who has been tested positive and has coronavirus, and you just stand within six feet or be near that person for 15 minutes or more.”

In Washington State, 52 people have died of the flu so far this season, and five of them have been children, according to the state’s Department of Health.

“Last weekend it was like a 48 hour bug and it was just like fever and I just stayed in and took care of myself and it went away,” said Beverly Gerlt.

“I try to take a lot of vitamin C, stay healthy, eat well and get enough sleep,” said Harry Petersen, who hasn’t gotten sick this season. “ I’m not too worried about either , I mean you can get sick at any time whenever.”

Health officials continue to stay calm about the coronavirus in the U.S., and that the risk is low.

They also stress the importance of getting a flu vaccine each season. Todd also says to keep up with good hygiene.

“Eat healthy, get fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet, not too much of anything. Exercise every day. Get outside every day. Get some fresh air,” said Todd. “Most importantly, wash your hands before you wash your face. Wash your hands after you’ve touched the door knob if you’re going to eat your lunch. If you’re sick, please don’t come to work.”

Flu shots are still available.