SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Health experts say the more immediate concern in San Diego is still the flu despite nationwide concerns over the coronavirus.
So far this flu season, San Diego County has recorded 39 deaths.
Nancy Marquez told 10News Friday her husband, Florentino, is still hospitalized with the flu, which he has been battling since the beginning of the year.
Marquez says her husband's symptoms started lingering for several days beginning around New Year's Eve. Then on Jan. 8, they went to the hospital where Florentino was immediately admitted to the ICU with pneumonia and a failing kidney.
"The flu shot is very important, and that's what I tell everybody, 'if you start getting sick, you know your body so you should be aware that if they tell you to get the flu shot, get it,' because my husband has never been sick, no surgeries, no anything, so for me, my point of view is, get your flu shot because look at him now," Marquez said.
Flu vaccines takes up to two weeks to take effect.
The Marquez's are waiting to see if Medi-Cal will cover their medical bills. In the meantime, a friend has setup a GoFundMe campaign to help the family with expenses.
This season, San Diego County has seen 11,778 reported influenza cases.
The flu vaccine is available at local doctors' offices, pharmacies, and public health centers. A list of locations offering flu shots can be found on the county's immunization website or by calling 211 for the county's health hotline.
Local health officials and the CDC recommends everyone 6 months and older receive a vaccine, especially those at higher risk of complications from the flu such as pregnant women, people with chronic medical conditions, and locals 65 or older.