There's been a dramatic increase in influenza activity in Minnesota, but health officials say it's not too late to get vaccinated.
Dr. Ruth Lynfield, Minnesota Department of Health epidemiologist, says it's your best protection.
"It's great to get your influenza vaccine and it's especially important if you live with people who are fragile or at an increased risk for severe influenza to help protect them."
Of the 27 influenza deaths reported in Minnesota so far, 23 of them were people age 65 or older. There have also been more than 1,100 people across the state hospitalized this flu season.
Lynfield says if you do come down with the flu, there are ways to lessen some of the symptoms and ways to stop the spread.
"First of all, you should stay home and rest because you don't want to spread the flu. (You should) have plenty of fluids. There are things you can take to make the headache go away. Those sorts of things."
Flu activity is also widespread in many other states, including North Dakota, where nearly 1,100 cases have been reported.
Sarah Kaspari Baker is a family nurse practitioner in the town of McClusky. She says this year's flu has been a nasty one.
"You have sudden onset, scratchy throat, runny nose like a faucet, and people are just going through boxes of Kleenexes, headaches, muscle aches. They feel like they've been run over by a truck."