Some 179 people turned out for an emergency flu shot clinic in Sinton Friday -- a good start for the effort to stop the flu outbreak in San Patricio County.

The clinic was scheduled Friday morning following three deaths that were reported in the county since just before Christmas. Those deaths included a two-year old girl, a 23-year old woman and a 46-year old man.

While San Patricio County Health Director Dr. James Mobley said 179 was a great turnout, many more county residents must get a shot.

"To really control this high level of influenza, we need to get between three- and five-percent of the population immunized," Mobley said. "If I can do that, than I can dramatically lower the incidence of death, disability, time loss, just everything; and for our county, that would be anywhere from 3,000 to 5,000 shots"

The latest numbers from the Centers for Disease Control show only a two-percent rise in cases for the first week of the new year, instead of a five-percent rise in the last week of 2013.

Dr. Mobley hopes to organize the next flu vaccination clinic in Mathis, which also has a high number of influenza cases.