A deadly strain of flu virus is hitting the Washington resulting in a wave of sheer illness reaching the peak and has seized the nation. According to health officials 382 cases of influenza have been reported in District since the start of January. While the total reported number is 624 cases since flu season starts in October. According to CDC figures approximately 9,000 patients have been reported to hospitals with flu symptoms since start of this flu season. 10 children died during the last week taking the figure to a total of 30. In Montgomery County the officials have issued a warning to residents about highly increasing number of flu cases and urged the people to take vaccinations and adopt precautions. In the same county nine schools have reported a high no of absences on sick leave. See list of best liver cancer hospitals in world.
Six hospitals of the county are imposing a bar on their facilities for children under age of 12 and on visitors with the flu like symptoms such as runny nose, cough, sore throat, etc. . Travis Gayle the County’s health officer said that it is necessary to implement strict restrictions to prevent the spread of flu virus. The visitors going to visit a patient in hospital have to wear a mask. Although the exact number of patients in Montgomery are not known but the situation is leading to some bad news regarding the number of patients this year in comparison to last few years. State health department has said that a total of 208 people has reported to be infected by the flu during first two weeks of January in Maryland. See list of best hair transplant centers in United States.
While having a look at this season and past few years this season has proved to be the worst one. In some areas the out break of the virus has put a sheer stress on flu vaccine supplies. A pharmacy in Bethesda has run short of flu shots due to a heavy influx of prescription from flu patients, said the pharmacist. They have given almost 1,000 vaccine shots to patients from August to the month of December. There has been a situation of chaos as the flu season is in full swing. Every year the flu season is different but this season is showing twinning character with some of the worst flu seasons in the past years.
Benjamin Schwartz, the director of epidemiology and population health of Fairfax County, said that about one-fourth of total number of patients visiting the hospital are suffering from flu like symptoms. The outbreak of flu in two care homes for elderly population in Fairfax is prompting health officials to take precautionary measures. The officials are requesting people having the flu like symptoms not to visit the nursing homes.
The heath officials of other states like District Maryland and Virginia are also reporting a rise in number of patients visiting the doctors and emergency rooms of hospitals. The patients have complained of fever, a headache, nausea and usually suffering from high fever. The vicious strain is touching the people of all age groups particularly young children and elderly are proving to be most vulnerable. The people of Washington are finding this flu season to be very cruel. People have feelings that this flu season is the worst of all the seasons they have experienced in the recent past and is still going on hitting strong on nerves.
The health officials are reporting the increase spread of flu as coast to coast . In California few hospitals are dealing with a huge influx of patients by setting up tents. According to a report of Disease Control and Prevention Department, the health officials have treated such a huge number of patients in the second week of January than any other equivalent flu season in a decade. See best health insurance plans to buy in Unites States for year 2018.
How many people are having the flu in America?
According to an estimate about 6% of all the Americans is in need of medical help having the flu like symptoms. CDC’s Outpatient Influenza like Illness Surveillance Network has tracked that about 2000 doctor’s offices and clinics are attending the patients with a fever higher than 100 degrees along with sore throat or cough. This high percentage of patients is not recorded usually in flu season but in a kind of pandemic flus or swine flu in 2009.
The high death rate is raising questions about antivirals?
There is a question that has started circulated in people’s mind that are antiviral medicines given for flu are working. The answer is yes. Only 1 % people was found resistant to antiviral medicine such as Tamiflu, Zanimavir, Panimavir among all the samples tested. The only limitation with these medicines is that they should be taken immediately after the appearance of symptoms. The only intravenously given medicine in hospitals is Rapivab. See cold and flu treatment details.
People who are at high risk of developing flu related complications
Usually, the people infecting from flu do not require any medical help or antiviral medication. They mostly start recovering within a week or two. But there are few people who are likely to undergo certain medical complications and are more vulnerable to flu. These complications may lead to the need of hospitalization or even death on some cases. The complications mostly associated with flu are Pneumonia, bronchitis, sinus and other infections. There can be a chance of worsening of chronic health problems due to flu.
People who are at risk of flu related complications are following.
- People with asthma are vulnerable to flu. They can have asthmatic attack proving fatal for them.
- People with chronic heart problems can have the worst situation.
- Pregnant women
- Children under age of five
- Elderly people above the age of 65
- HIV or AIDS
- Cancer patients
- People in care homes or nursing centers
Common symptoms of Flu
- Fever above 100 degrees
- Sore throat
- Body pain
What is the advice of Health Professionals?
As it is a very active flu season it is strongly recommended by health professionals that you should protect yourself and your family from this viral infection by avoiding the maximum chances of contact with the infected person. See how to deal with vaginal mesh.
Three major requests are being made by the health authorities.
- Get a vaccination shot as soon as possible. It is never too late to protect yourself from getting infection and be vaccinated. The studies have shown that the chances of intensive-care unit admission as well as death risk has been reduced in patients who have been vaccinated against the virus.
- Try to wash your hands with soap or antibacterial gels. The chances of infection will decrease by touch method of transfer as we are in contact with many things through out our day.
- Unfortunately if you are, a patient of flu please try to stay at home as much as you can. This will be quite helpful for the community especially for patients with underlying health issues as you can be a source of spreading the disease.