Deadly Flu Season Hits LA County Prompting Urgent Call For Vaccinations

11 January, 2018, 06:10 | Author: Keith Rowe
  • The Ohio Department of Health reports the state's first pediatric flu-related death of the 2017-18 flu season a 4-year-old boy from Montgomery County.
Influenza claimed the lives of two people in Northeast Ohio according to the Cuyahoga County Board

Around this time of year, it seems like everyone is getting sick - and while that's a normal thing for flu season, the number of people getting sick and staying in the hospital this season is anything but. Last flu season, there were only 14 cases from October 1, 2016, to March 31, 2017.

On Monday, the number of people seeking care at the John Peter Smith Hospital Emergency Department reached 400, up from 321 on January 1.

"What has happened in some instances over the last week have been just spot shortages of the medication because of increased demand in some cities and in some pharmacies", he said.

The increase in cases caused the hospital on Tuesday to issue visitation restrictions until the cases drop. She said in order for the CDC to produce the correct vaccination, it must correctly predict what type of flu strain will be prevalent.

The victim was a 4-year-old boy from Montgomery County.

California is one of the 49 states that reported either regional or widespread flu activity, excluding Delaware. District spokesman Clint Bond said, "We know when it comes right down to it it may be that we do have a lot of absences, but this is at least an attempt to try and minimize that". We have some people hospitalized with severe cases of influenza.

"Public health officials will tell you it's still the best way to prevent the flu", Schlueter said of the vaccine. De Lota said feeling vaccine reactions for a few days is nothing compared to getting the actual flu. The flu can lead to complications like pneumonia, dehydration and worsening of chronic medical conditions. She says the December spike hit quickly, prompting the hospital to implement its' policy on employee vaccination.

Echoing the hand-washing theme is Tom Schlueter, public information officer for the Kane County Health Department. The number of cases is rising and the predominant strain - A (H3N2) - is one that in past years has caused more hospital admissions and deaths than other strains, especially among older adults and young children.

Individuals should seek help from the closest emergency room if they have these symptoms: difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, chest pain or severe abdominal pain, confusion, sudden dizziness or severe vomiting.


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