The Oneida County Health Department says the number of laboratory-confirmed cases of influenza in the county is 474 as of 4:00 p.m. Tuesday.
Ken Fanelli, Public Information Officer for the health department speculates that many people avoided the flu shot last year because of the mild winter, and have done the same so far this year. That could be contributing to so many flu cases so early this year.
Just last week there were about 94 cases of flu in Oneida County, and the jump to nearly 500 is staggering. Health officials tell CNYcentral the largest concentration of cases is in the 1-9 year old age group. Fanelli says children tend to spread flu faster because of poor respiratory hygiene and close proximity.
Click here to lean more about getting a flu shot in Oneida County.