Pregnant woman dies from flu in Tennessee - WSMV News 4

Pregnant woman dies from flu in Tennessee

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(WSMV File) (WSMV File)

Four Tennesseans have lost their lives to the flu so far this year, and it's not even the peak of the flu season.

The most recent death was a pregnant woman. The other three victims have been children.

The Tennessee Department of Health says children and pregnant women are among the most at risk.

Nearly every county health department in Tennessee is offering free flu shots for the rest of the season. Click here for locations and hours.

Nationwide, 106 people have died this flu season.

According to NBC News, 41,000 cases of the flu have been reported so far, which is three times more than last season.

Forty-six states across the country are experiencing flu outbreaks. At this time last year, it was just 12.

There has been widespread concern that the flu vaccine has only been 10 percent effective, but a doctor at Vanderbilt says you should still get it.

"Even if you get sick having the vaccine, your illness tends to be milder," said Dr. William Schaffner with Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is calling washing your hands the "do it yourself vaccine." Just washing your hands regularly for 20 seconds at a time can keep you and everyone around you from getting sick.

Those 20 seconds of washing your hands are key. An easy way to pass the time is to sing "happy birthday" to yourself.

While the flu can be deadly for people who have underlying health conditions, doctors say most people will recover without complications.

"These patients should truly stay home and seek medical attention with their primary care physician instead of rushing to the emergency department," said Dr. Steven Kim from Riverside, CA.

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