You’re all sick: flu is on the rise across America, Buffalo no exception
blog by Ben Kirst • January 12, 2013 @ 3:18am
Forty-seven of the 50 United States are reporting widespread flu activity, according to the Center for Disease Control. Wash your filthy hands for 20 seconds or more, America! You should not have to be told AGAIN. Anyhow, if you are trying to avoid influenza, Guam is apparently the place to be—the CDC noted that there are no reports of the flu on that fine Pacific island.
Not so here on the home front! According to WKBW-TV, “Within the past 2 weeks alone Erie County health officials say they’ve seen a huge spike in documented flu cases. With two new strains of the virus circulating, countless people are sick throughout the region. Some hospitals were forced to cancel scheduled surgeries and turn away non-risk patients due to the influx in patient volume.” And The Buffalo News added that “Statewide, more than 19,000 flu cases have been reported this year, compared to just over 4,000 last year..the testing that is done shows that over the past three weeks, there has been a sharp increase in the number of confirmed cases of influenza.”
So is the flu really a big deal? Yes it is—20 children have died from influenza during the current flu season, Fox News noted. In South Carolina, 22 people have died from the flu—mostly old folks and little kids, groups who are known to be at risk. In Minnesota, the flu outbreak is as bad as it has been since swine flu was the concern du jour.
So what can you do to protect yourself against the flu? Know the symptoms when you’re sick—a temperature over 100 degrees, chills, nausea, fatigue, sore throat, runny nose—and get to the doctor right away if you’re dizzy, confused, have trouble breathing or can’t stop puking. Get vaccinated—New York is not reporting vaccination shortages right now—and stay away from sick people, wash your damn hands and keep your fingers out of your nose, mouth and eyes.
Stay safe, Western New York.