ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - Although COVID-19 continues to be a health concern in South Georgia, health leaders said the flu is not.
“Not disappeared but our numbers are lower than usual,” said epidemiologist Jacqueline Jenkins with the Southwest Health District (SWHD).
She believes it’s because people have been wearing masks and social distancing to combat the COVID-19 virus over the past 12 months.
Little did we know, Jenkins pointed out, we were helping fight off two viruses and the flu shot could have also played a factor in the lower numbers.
“We put a lot of emphasis on people getting the flu shot so to kinda help that potential of getting two really bad viruses at the same time,” she added.
But there wasn’t a high number of that happening either.
“It’s a good surprise for us that, that did not happen,” Jenkins said.
So if the flu isn’t hiding, where is it in Southwest Georgia?
In the past three weeks, Southwest Health District leaders said they’ve only had seven hospitalizations related to the flu within their 14 county district and none of those were in Dougherty County.
Another positive, zero flu-related deaths this entire season reported to the SWHD.
“We haven’t even had a lot of reports of severe cases,” Jenkins said.
With the bulk of flu season behind us, Jenkins believes we’ll be okay as the season starts to wrap up.
Southwest Health District said flu season is typically from October through March.
However, they start their flu surveillance from September through June.