34 new flu deaths reported, bringing state's total to 140 for season

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Jonah Kaplan learns the difference a proper hand washing makes.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services said Thursday that North Carolina saw 34 new flu deaths last week, bringing the total to 140 for the season.

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Flu is a contagious respiratory illness, spread by a virus. Young children and the elderly are at greatest risk from flu and its complications.

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The trick to washing away flu germs is singing "Happy Birthday."



According to DHHS, flu-like illnesses now account for 7 percent of hospital visits across the state.

Those worried about the flu or feel that might be at risk, should speak with their doctor about getting the flu shot or other preventative measures.

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Triangle doctors report a shortage of flu test kits.

RELATED: How to tell the difference between a cold and the flu
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