JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Friday was an active afternoon at the Jim Fortuna Senior Center in Fort Caroline. It's a place where those 65 and older come to play games and socialize, and the main topic of conversation this day was the flu.
"I think we're all a little concerned about it because it's just hitting the nation," Mary Lou McNaughton who comes here two or three times a week. "We wash our hands, and keep things clean, but it's still on our minds."
Right now, the flu is widespread in almost every state, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In Florida, levels have dropped to moderate, but it's still too close for comfort for Ann Clark, who almost lost her mother to the flu years ago.
"We've had a lot of people coughing and sneezing and carrying on. It's very concerning."
This flu strain is aggressive and dangerous to seniors, whose immune systems have become weaker over time.
Dr. Michael Janssen of Baptist Primary Care Regency, is warning patients 65 and older to take caution, even if they've been vaccinated.
"We have a vaccine that's a bit stronger for them and hopefully we'll get a better immune response. The strains that are going around are what's in our flu vaccine so it should work. The trouble is, our vaccine is only 60 to 70 percent useful."
That means, it won't work 30 to 40 percent of the time, so Janssen warns everyone to wash their hands, not to touch their face, and stay home if you feel you might have the flu.
The CDC estimates the flu kills approximately 24,000 people on average a year.