LINCOLN, NEB. - Nebraska has had 2,877 cases of influenza this season, 858 just this week. The last time the flu was this severe was three years ago. Doctors said the issue with this year's flu is that the flu shot is only about 10 percent effective.
Dr. Thomas J. Safranek is the state epidemiologist.
"The flu shot we study every year and we hope and pray that we have a good match to the circulating strain, unfortunately this year, it looks like that match isn't what we'd like it to be," he said.
CHI Health St. Elizabeth said they've admitted 178 people so far this season because of the flu. Bryan Health said they typically see 30 patients a week but last week saw 90, three times the typical amount.
Lincoln Public Schools said between students and staff they've had 30 cases, which isn't unusual.
"Signs to look out for are fever, body aches, it comes on pretty quickly and then you had headache and runny nose," said Andrew Zurcher, nurse practitioner at CHI Health's Quick Care on 50th and O streets.
Dr. Safranek said although the flu shot won't make you bullet proof, it's still your best defense along with some other advice.
"If you keep about a three foot distance we know that the particles that are transmitted when you cough and sneeze, gravity pulls them down where you're not as likely to be exposed," he said.