Scott Gordon

Series: The Flu And Wisconsin's Public Health

No two flu seasons are alike — from one year to the next, different types of the influenza virus dominate. Every year, virologists, health officials and healthcare providers marshall their resources to prevent and treat infections. When a flu season is particularly tough, as was the case in 2017-18, the illness tests limitations and vulnerabilities in the public health system. Wisconsin plays a crucial role in a nationwide network of influenza surveillance, which is also on guard for the emergence of a global flu pandemic. Meeting future challenges of influenza hinges on relationships that connect scientists and healthcare providers at local, state, federal and international levels.
 
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Flu cases in Wisconsin have spiked significantly in February 2020, according to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.
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Snow is usually the culprit when school is canceled in Wisconsin in winter. In the 2019-20 flu season, however, several schools around the state have closed due to illness.
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Hundreds of people in Wisconsin have been hospitalized for influenza so far in the 2019-20 season. Wisconsin Department of Health Services influenza surveillance coordinator Tom Haupt discusses this seasonal strains of the flu virus and why numbers are up for the season.
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More than one-third of adults don't plan on getting a flu shot in the 2019-2020 season, according to a survey from National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago.
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With the 2019-20 flu season right around the corner — and possibly hitting the state early — public health officials want Wisconsinites to take the right precautions to protect themselves against the virus.
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State health officials say seasonal influenza has not peaked yet in Wisconsin and people can expect the illness to hang around through much of April.
The University of Wisconsin-Madison is at the center of controversial avian influenza research that involves making the virus potentially more dangerous for humans. Will Cushman of WisContext discusses what it would mean for this research to resume.
A UW-Madison laboratory is set to resume experiments that could build the foundation of an early warning system for flu pandemics, but critics say its approval lacked transparency and creates unnecessary risks.
The 1918 influenza pandemic prompted intense interest in the disease, including in Wisconsin, placing scientists in the state at the vanguard of flu research over the ensuing century.
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The seasonal flu has not hit the state or the country as hard as it did last year, which Wisconsin health officials described as "significant and strange."