Ivey issues public health emergency — FLU CASES SPIKE


In Houston, area hospitals have filled up, including Texas Children's Hospital, where a quarter of patients are being treated for the flu. "Nurses from the five Scott County school districts call in weekly to report".

State officials have seen a spike in cases a little earlier than is typical.

"The flu vaccine isn't flawless, but it's our best tool", Lakey said.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports influenza activity has spread to 46 USA states.

"Now is the time to get your flu vaccine if you have not already", said Kris Ehresmann, director of infectious disease at the Minnesota Department of Health.

Nearly all St. David's HealthCare hospitals are brimming with patients, according to the system's chief medical officer, Ken Mitchell.

A proclamation said the health care facilities are overwhelmed by the number of ill patients and taxed to such an extent that care of patients may no longer be provided "in the traditional, normal and customary manner".

Dr. Chang says people with flu symptoms shouldn't worry about lack of insurance or money, that it's much more important to be treated.

The state tracks only pediatric deaths due to the flu, and only one has been reported so far.

Normally one type picks up after the other has peaked, she said, but that's not the case, this year.

Children under 5 and adults older than 65 are the most vulnerable.

Chart showing Hong Kong's 2018 statistics for flu cases falling above the baseline.

The non-profit immunization group recently received a shipment of over 2,000 flu vaccines for adults, and has an additional stockpile reserved exclusively for children who do not have health insurance or can not otherwise afford the vaccine. Despite the increase, they said they're prepared to fight the flu for all residents in need.

While this year's vaccine is less effective, experts say you should still get it.

"We applaud all colleges and universities for engaging their networks in the effort to protect their students, staff, and families from the flu", said Dr. Eden Wells, chief medical executive with MDHHS.

What are the symptoms? They include headaches, runny eyes and nose, fever, chills and body aches, according to Grey and Garcia.

How does it spread? Keep your distance from people who are coughing, sneezing or presenting other flu symptoms.

Dr. Harkins says covering your mouth when you cough with the inner-side of your elbow and washing your hands are good ways to prevent spreading the virus.