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VDH reports 'sporadic' flu cases across Virginia, urges vaccinations

As the VDH urges flu vaccines more than ever, a Newport News pediatrician is seeing an increase in flu and COVID-19 cases at her clinic.

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials are seeing a steady increase in flu activity across the country. 

Officials said many of the infections have been in children and young adults from 5-24 years old. Right now in Virginia, the spread is minimal.

“None of us like to see the numbers go up. We’re all kind of worried. We’re going in the wrong direction," said Children's Clinic Pediatrician Dr. Elizabeth Broderick.

Broderick has been tracking flu and COVID-19 cases at the Children’s Clinic in Newport News.

On Monday, Virginia Department of Health officials announced they have started to see sporadic reports of influenza in recent weeks. Part of the agency's statement reads: 

“Some experts have suggested that because there was little flu virus activity last year, natural immunity may be lower than in an average flu season. This development makes getting the influenza vaccine this season even more important," said Respiratory Disease Coordinator Lisa Sollot, MPH.

“As we’re moving into the colder months, normally our cases will tick up," said Broderick.

Broderick said she is also concerned about the COVID-19 virus and the vaccines are helping. But, she worries about the uptick she's seeing at the clinic.

“Normally we will have three or four COVID cases a week. Last week we had 11," she said.

Broderick wants to remind families to practice all health and safety measures for both viruses.

“And the tough thing with flu and COVID, with influenza you’re contagious the day before you feel sick. With COVID you can be contagious two days before you feel sick," said Broderick.