(PUEBLO COUNTY, Colo.) — Two adults have been hospitalized with influenza in Pueblo County the week of Oct. 17, according to the Pueblo Department of Public Health & Environment (PDPHE).

“These two hospitalized flu cases tell us flu is in our community,” said Alicia Solis, program manager at the Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment. “This is a reminder we can all protect ourselves from flu and other infectious illnesses when we stay up to date with vaccinations, wash our hands with soap and water frequently, disinfect surfaces, wear a mask when around others and stay home and away from others when you are feeling ill,” added Solis.

PDPHE only collects data on hospitalized flu cases, which began on Oct. 2, 2022 and will go through May 2023. The data shows a drop in flu cases in Pueblo County and around the world between 2020 and 2022. Public health officials contribute the low numbers to prevention methods such as social distancing and wearing face masks. Below is a summary of past flu data in Pueblo County:

YearTotal Cases of Hospitalized with
Flu in Pueblo County
2013 – 201472
2014 – 2015143
2015 – 201669
2016 – 2017169
2017 – 2018264
2018 – 2019156
2019 – 2020180
2020 – 20210
2021 – 2022 16

PDPHE encourages the community to check with their health care provider or local pharmacy to get vaccinated. Those six months and older may get a flu shot. Health officials say it takes about two weeks after vaccination to build up protection. Flu and COVID vaccines may be received at the same time.

You cannot get influenza from the vaccine, says PDPHE. There is a chance you can get sick if you are near an ill person before or after receiving the vaccine while your body is building protection. 

Common side effects from the flu shot include:  

  • Soreness, redness, tenderness or swelling where the shot was given
  • Low-grade fever
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches 

When you feel flu-like symptoms, contact your doctor. Flu symptoms may include: 

  • Cough 
  • Sore Throat 
  • Runny or stuffy nose 
  • Muscle or body aches 
  • Headaches 
  • Fatigue (tiredness) 
  • Fever* or feeling feverish/chills (Not everyone with flu will have a fever.
  • Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults