The first day of fall means the return of flu season, Utah doctor warns
SALT LAKE CITY — Utah health officials don’t fully know what to expect yet with this year’s flu season, but they want to prepare as best they can.
Intermountain Healthcare Dr. Tamara Sheffield credits measures put in place last year to limit the spread of COVID-19 for keeping the 2020 flu season mild in Utah. But with fewer people masking and practicing social distancing in 2021, she worries things may change.
“The less we are doing those masking and distancing, the more we will start to see flu again,” she said Wednesday on KSL NewsRadio’s Dave & Dujanovic. “Just like we’ve seen respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) — it came back with a vengeance this summer, when we’ve had no cases last winter, which was extraordinary.”
It also makes her a little nervous to see what happens after last year’s mild season.
“Whenever we have a big lull in flu, we’re always going, ‘Okay, when’s the really big season gonna hit?'” she said. “Since we haven’t had it for a while, we expect when it does come back, it will come back strong.”
She recommends Utah residents seek out a flu shot sooner rather than later, saying you can receive the flu shot at the same time as a COVID-19 vaccine.
The Utah Department of Health tracks weekly seasonal flu activity here.
Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play.
Today’s Top Stories
- Uncle of missing five-year-old in Logan charged with murder, remains found
- Opinion: Feed Utah food drive demonstrates what Utah does best
- Utah is the 10th most active state in the country, according to study
- Two people die in single rollover crash on Skull Valley Road in Tooele
- Utah roads rated fifth best in the nation by new report
- Another COVID-19 case count record set in Utah: 12,990 in a single day
- Church president, NAACP call for “racial harmony” in joint op-ed
- Robert Nelson – West Point Junior High
- KSL 5 is back on DirecTV
- Parents mad, Davis School District investigating after student shows up to school dressed as Hitler