Windsor-Essex records first yearly flu case

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The Windsor and Essex County region has recorded its first case of the flu virus this year, the health unit reported Wednesday.

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The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit has now reported its first recorded case of Influenza A for this year’s flu season. There were no confirmed cases of flu in the region last year, and before that the first reported case for flu season was on Dec. 11, 2019.

Residents are reminded to get their flu shots, which are provided for free to everyone who lives, works or studies in Ontario. Residents can get them from their health care providers, or at participating local pharmacies — find a list online at

Influenza is a virus that causes an infection of the nose, throat and lungs. It can be easily spread through the air through talking, coughing and sneezing, as well as through surfaces if an individual touches their eyes, nose or mouth after coming into contact with a contaminated surface, the health unit advised.

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Symptoms start one to four days after exposure and individuals can be contagious before they begin showing systems.

Flu symptoms and the symptoms of COVID-19 are similar and can include fever, difficulty breathing, fatigue, sore throat, headaches and muscle pain. The health unit advises residents with any of the above symptoms to stay home from work or school and seek testing if they are eligible.

While flu infections are fairly common and can affect anyone, some people are at higher risk for serious complications. Those people include young children and babies under 6 months old (who cannot receive the flu vaccine); adults 65 and older; pregnant people; and those living with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes or heart disease.

Precautions against spreading the flu including getting the flu vaccine every year, practicing frequent hand washing, coughing or sneezing into your elbow or a tissue and avoiding touching your face, staying home when sick and avoiding close contact with others when you’re not feeling well . Residents should also frequently disinfect high-touch surfaces and shared items.

Residents can find more information about the flu, flu vaccine and precautions online at

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