OKLAHOMA CITY - According to newly released statistics from state health officials, eight people have died in Oklahoma from influenza this season.
The information, released Thursday morning by the Oklahoma State Department of Health, indicates 345 people have been hospitalized -- an increase from 117 last week -- since Sept. 30, 2012.
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In Tulsa alone there are 115 hospitalizations, according to the Tulsa Health Department.
Three of the deaths have occurred in Tulsa County and one each in Creek, Mayes, Muskogee, Pittsburg and Rogers counties.
People who already have the flu but show no symptoms can still spread it to others, so health officials continue to emphasize the importance of getting the flu vaccine.
Health care providers are encouraging flu shots for everyone, including pregnant women, the elderly and people with underlying health issues. The vaccine is available for anyone six months or older.
Flu symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue.
www.kjrh.com/flu for vaccine information, flu facts, tips on how to stay healthy and other resources.