3 killed by aggressive flu strain; hundreds more sick



SEATTLE - The state health department is warning the public about a flu strain that's hitting Western Washing that led to the deaths of three people and has sickened hundreds more.


Officials are calling the strain early, severe and aggressive.


According to the Everett Herald, 23 people are hospitalized because of the flu in Snohomish County.  That number is higher than it has been in the last two years.


Because a child in Pierce County and two senior citizens in King County died, the health department is recommending that everyone older than 6 months get vaccinated.


Children are more susceptible and are contagious for longer.


Because the strain is serious, people who are sick should stay away from others at least 24 hours after their fever is gone.


Health officials said it takes about two weeks after receiving the shot to be fully protected.