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Coronavirus? Health officials see far bigger risk in flu

Malheur County Health Department officials said the flu is still active locally. (The Enterprise/File)

ONTARIO – A new coronavirus continues to grab headlines across the globe but closer to home health officials say residents should be more worried about an old and annual nemesis: Influenza.

“I would say the average Malheur County resident is way, way more likely to get flu than the coronavirus,” said Angie Gerrard, a registered nurse at the Malheur County Health Department.

The current coronavirus outbreak is unfolding in China where more than 800 people have died and another 28,000 are infected. The malady also jumped from the Chinese mainland with cases reported in 24 other countries, including 12 infections in the United States.

The World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a global health emergency late last month.

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