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Flu cases spike and then drop in SWFL ahead of the Fourth of July weekend

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Posted at 5:24 PM, Jun 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-30 05:28:55-04

LEE COUNTY, Fla. — It's unusual for this time of year, but flu cases have seen an uptick in our area over the last few weeks.

Lee Health reports that for the week of June 18, they had a small spike of just over 300 flu cases.

Cape Coral resident Flora Morateer says she's experienced the spike personally, and that it's been spreading like wildfire to her family and friends - and that it's enough for her to want to cancel her Fourth of July weekend plans.

“Well my two sons have had it, my daughter has it. My grandson has had it, Jimmy’s had it, and I had it," says Morateer. “It’s making me so cautious that I’m staying home.”

The same goes for Brandon John, a Cape Coral resident of five years. “I was sick before - with Covid actually, and I don’t want to deal with sickness like that again," says John. "It hit me bad.”

Although the cases have started to go down, Dr. Mary Beth Saunders says it might have to do with people not wearing masks much anymore. Dr. Saunders is the System Medical Director of Infection Prevention at Lee Health.

“We were all in mask wear pretty heavily in December and January, and since then, we’ve thrown caution to the wind - masks have been abandoned in most cases. So we’re seeing an increase in viral respiratory illnesses that we’re not used to seeing this type of year," she explains.

But if you do plan on going out to enjoy the fireworks, Dr. Saunders says to use your best judgment, a piece of advice echoed by Morateer.

“I don’t want to get it again and I don’t want other people - especially my family with it," she says.