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Yes It's January, But No It's Not Too Late To Get A Flu Shot

Riverside County Health Officials suggest getting the flu shot even if you think it is too late. The benefits reach beyond the months commonly associated with "flu season." (Ted Warren / Associated Press )
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Attention Angelenos: flu season is now forever, and it's not too late for the shot.

Flu season typically runs from October through May with a peak in February. But, much like fire season, Riverside health official Dr. Cameron Kaiser argues it's now year-round.

"We just see more of it during winter and early spring. So there is still a benefit to receiving your flu shot even if you are relatively late in the season" Kaiser said.

Health officials recommend getting the flu shot when it becomes available in October and November, but going later is still vital in mitigating severe illness, Kaiser said.

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In California, 52 people have died from the flu this season.

The flu is especially dangerous to children and pregnant women, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The majority of children who died from the flu last year had not received the shot. Experts say the shot reduces a pregnant woman's chance of catching the flu by 40 percent, while also providing immunity for the baby.

Doctors recommend anyone over 6 months old to get the shot.

"If you are able to get it and haven't done so yet, protect yourself and protect your family. Go out and avail yourself of it - it only takes a minute," Kaiser said.