Hospital admissions for the flu are on the rise across Hidalgo County, prompting officials to advise residents to get vaccinated as soon as possible.
The county is now reporting that 27 people have been hospitalized with the flu, while 10 of those people are in intensive care units.
In its last update, Sept. 30, the county had reported that 24 people were hospitalized with the flu, three of whom were in intensive care.
With cases rising, the county is urging the public to get vaccinated.
“Get your flu vaccine ASAP,” the county wrote on social media on Friday. “Protect family, friends and colleagues.”
The county’s recommendation comes just days after state officials encouraged Texans to get the flu shot.
On Monday, the Texas Department of State Health Services recommended that eligible Texans should get their flu vaccine now, noting that it takes about two weeks for the body to make flu antibodies after receiving the vaccine.
“Because influenza can be a very serious disease, we recommend that everyone aged 6 months and over get an annual flu shot,” said Dr. Jennifer Shuford, interim commissioner of the DSHS, in a press release.
“The flu vaccines for the 2022-23 flu season have undergone significant changes since last season, making them better able to protect against the flu viruses that are currently circulating,” Shuford added. “That’s why it’s important to get this season’s flu vaccine before flu activity increases even further in Texas.”
State health officials also said people can safely receive both a flu vaccine and a COVID-19 vaccine or booster without losing the effectiveness of either.
“If you need to get both a flu vaccine and a COVID-19 booster dose, you can get them in the same visit,” Shuford said. “Both flu and COVID-19 can cause serious illnesses, so it’s a good idea to keep up to date with these two vaccines.”
For more information, the public can contact Hidalgo County Health and Human Services at (956) 383-6221.