SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - The flu epidemic continues across the country and across the Ozarks.
Health departments release new numbers every week on confirmed cases of the flu and here's a breakdown of the numbers.
For the seventh week in a row, the flu numbers are up in Greene County.
As of Tuesday, 621 cases are confirmed.
Last year, Greene County's total number of flu cases was 507.
As of Saturday, Christian County had 214 confirmed cases of the flu.
Just like Greene County, this is up from last year.
In total, there were 99 cases of the flu in 2012, a 116% increase.
In Taney County, the number of cases has jumped since the beginning of the year.
As of this week, there are 107 confirmed cases.
There were only 88 cases at the beginning of January.
Polk County's numbers aren't as high as other counties around the Ozarks.
In December 2012, there were 28 confirmed cases.
So far, this month they've had 45.
The total number this season stands at 73, but Polk County health officials expect that number to spike very soon.
Health officials say the best defense is getting a flu shot.
"It's not too late to get your influenza vaccine," says Kendra Findley with the Greene County Health Department. "It takes about two weeks to develop an immune response once you've had the vaccine, so if you are exposed to influenza disease in those two weeks, you could still become ill."
Health officials say the confirmed number of cases is just the tip of the iceberg.
It reflects the number of people who came in, got tested for the flu and that test was positive.
Dozens of people have the flu but don't get tested so they are not one of the counted, confirmed cases.
That's why doctors say dozens more could be infected and not know it.
Health officials continue to urge everyone to practice good hand washing, not go to work if they're sick and get vaccinated.