Published: Fri, January 12, 2018
Health Care | By Oscar Goodwin

OR physicians urge flu patients to call first due to overcrowding

OR physicians urge flu patients to call first due to overcrowding

Healthcare providers are required to report cases of the flu in patients hospitalized in the intensive care unit or deaths associated with the flu among people younger than 65.

In St. Louis County, cases of the flu have nearly doubled since mid-December.

Most healthy adults may be able to infect other people beginning one day before symptoms develop and up to five to seven days after becoming sick, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Nurses, doctors, pharmacists and family practioners are keeping busy this year, as more and more influenza cases pop up across Plano. "Everywhere from babies to elderly are getting it".

In Montgomery County, officials confirmed one flu-related death.

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Emergency rooms are crowded and ambulances are in high demand.

It is still too soon to say just how bad this flu season will be, but the CDC believes it could reach near epidemic levels.

Parkland Hospital in Dallas has seen nearly 1,000 people coming to their emergency department seeking treatment.

Public Health England said 4.5million people suffered symptoms last week and it was "watching closely" to see if the virus mutates further.

Although flu seasons vary, influenza activity typically increases in October and can last as late as May.

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"But you really don't know the peak until you're coming down the other side", she said. Over-the-counter medications like Tylenol or ibuprofen may reduce fever and alleviate some symptoms.

With the news of widespread flu activity across Texas, patients have had mild difficulty locating flu clinics. Matching flu transmission with flu vaccine components naturally increase the likeness of effective vaccine protection.

There have been 11,515 cases of influenza reported this season, with 2,455 reported between December 31, 2017 and January 6, 2018.

For the first time, a cell-grown H3N2 vaccine reference virus was used to produce the H3N2 component of the cell-based vaccine, Flucelvax.

Avoid close contact. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Those who have yet to be vaccinated can still do so - low-priced and free vaccines are available at many pharmacies - to reduce the chance of contracting the flu or to ease the symptoms should they get sick. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.

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