An earlier flu season is expected this year

Photo: Courtesy of NBC News
Published:
Updated:

School was closed for kids in at least one Michigan district Friday, reportedly because too many kids and teachers were out sick with flu.

Cases are starting to pop up in other areas of the country as well.

"Already this year, we're seeing an uptick in the number of cases just a few weeks earlier than is maybe normal," says Dr. Buddy Creech of Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Doctors insist now is the time to get a flu shot.

The vaccine is not perfect. You could still get sick, but studies have shown the shot can reduce the severity of the disease and prevent flu deaths.

Just over a third of adults got the flu shot last year, and it was one of the worst seasons on record. 80,000 flu-related deaths and 900,000 hospitalizations were reported.

Meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration recently approved a new drug to treat the flu. Doctors say Xofluza works with just one dose.

Xofluza will cost $150 dollars, although the price could be lowered to $30 dollars with insurance.

Get more on this story from NBC News.

Filed under: 
Flu