The flu season has arrived in force this year across the country and the region.
The emergency room at Nash General Hospital recently saw more than 300 patients in a day – a first since the ER opened. The average day sees 170 patients, which rises to around 200 patients during the typical flu season, Nash General Hospital spokesman Jeff Hedgepeth told Telegram writer Brie Handgraaf.
An influx of flu patients and those with flu-like symptoms likely played a part in those record-setting numbers.
This flu season isn’t typical. Edgecombe County’s health department reported more people with flu-like symptoms this flu season, and the cases appeared sooner than usual. In addition, one person in Edgecombe County died from the flu this season, officials said.
Obviously, the flu and colds are spread through contact with other people. Those who are sick should stay home from school or work. Washing hands frequently and thoroughly also will help limit the spread of illnesses. Those with severe symptoms should see a doctor.
Flu vaccinations are recommended for everyone 6 months or older. Flu shots remain available for those who want them. Of those 20 children who have died so far this season in the U.S., only two were fully vaccinated, according to medical reports. About 24,000 Americans die each flu season, according to the CDC.
Let’s put health first this flu season. Rest up, drink lots of fluids and limit the spread of any illnesses by staying home or avoiding those with weaker immune systems.