AUSTIN (KXAN) - The Affordable Care Act that just started is a major sticking point in the budget talks. But the government shutdown could have an indirect impact on your health.
We are getting into flu season, and the federal agency responsible for monitoring the spread of the flu across the country, the Centers For Disease Control, is partially closed with everything else.
Right now, the CDC website spells it out.
A disclaimer reads, "Due to the lapse in government funding....Regular updates to the CDC Influenza web site, including the weekly 'FluView' report and updates to guidance for clinicians, will not be possible."
"CDC will not be routinely analyzing surveillance data nor testing laboratory specimens submitted as part of routine surveillance."
Local health officials say thankfully it's just October and not peak flu season.
"It hasn't really affected us yet, especially because we're not seeing a lot of flu," said Coleen Christian, with the Austin-Travis County Health Department.
Dr. Ann Buchanan with St. David's Medical Center tells KXAN they've yet to diagnose someone with the flu virus, but patients are starting to trickle in.
"We are starting to see people with some flu-like viral symptoms; where they're having body aches, starting to get fevers, and starting to get the upper respiratory infections," Dr. Buchanan said.
The CDC adjustments don't affect flu vaccine supply.
Doctors are stressing now is the time to protect yourself.
"There's no reason not to get the flu shot, unless you are allergic to the flu shot," Dr. Buchanan said.
The shot lasts you all flu season.
While the CDC's flu monitoring is shut down, both state and local health departments are still tracking the virus.
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