Big Drop In Reported Flu Cases file photo.

Less than half of the residents in Windsor-Essex have received their flu shot this season, but the local health unit is reporting a drop in the number of influenza cases.

During a Board of Health meeting on Thursday, the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit reported that there are only three confirmed cases of influenza in the region. There were 102¬†confirmed cases at this time last year — a 94% decrease.

“One of the contributing factors is that the vaccine this year is a good match for the current influenza [strain] that’s out there,” says Mike Janisse, communications manager¬†with the health unit. “Also, the milder temperatures are helping.”

However, the health unit is estimating that only around 40% of local residents have received their flu vaccine, with 141,000 doses distributed so far this season.

“I think it speaks to the need to continue to promote people getting the flu shot,” says Janisse. “Especially to protect those who are really at a high risk.”

The health unit continues to recommend that all residents get the flu shot, and that anyone who becomes ill with the flu should stay at home to avoid spreading the virus.