Flu cases expected to increase

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Kentucky has seen fewer cases of both the seasonal and the H1N1 flu. But that is not expected to last where cases are expected to spike in January.

We talked to local health officials about the vaccine.

Cases in both the seasonal and H1N1 flu are decreasing, but one local physician's assistant says the worst is yet to come.

“January or February time frame again,” Terry Smith says. “They usually come in the roller coaster type fashion. They will get high numbers and then they'll slow down and then they'll start coming back again.”

With peak season looming there are still some people that have not been vaccinated for both strains.

“A lot of them are scared because it is the first time that this vaccination has been around in 30 years,” Local Nurse Practitioner Donald McPherson says.

State health officials say more than one million H1N1 vaccines will distributed throughout the state.

McPherson says some people are afraid to get the vaccine because of the side effects that come with it.

“You can have flu like symptoms, you can have a reaction near the injection site, or your arm will swell and hurt for a few days,” McPherson says.

“There are rumors as with any vaccinations that it causes problems,” Smith says. “But it should be as safe as the regular flu vaccinations because it's made the same way.”

Smith says it's critical that people get vaccinated for both strains of the flu.

“It will prevent most cases of the flu,” Smith says. “People may still get mild symptoms but it's usually mild if they get the flu after that.”

And doctors say the best way to prevent getting either strain is to get vaccinated.

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