Rochester's Democrat & Chronicle, in a Jan. 9 story, reports that the Rochester area has recorded 8 flu deaths and 225 flu-related hospitalizations since the flu season began. All 8 deaths were in elderly or middle aged patients. The influenza season normally runs from Oct. 1 to May.
In an Examiner interview yesterday, Dr. Nayef El-Daher, Division Chief, Infectious Diseases, Unity Health System Department of Medicine, talked about the situation in the Rochester and Monroe County area. He reported that the ILI rate for the county, as of Jan. 5, was 8 percent. His facility has an excellent supply of flu vaccine and enough Tamiflu in the pharmacy for anticipated inpatient and outpatient needs.
Janine Cook, from Rochester General Hospital, provided the following statement on Jan. 9:
The 2012-13 Flu Season is hitting hard with most of the country experiencing an increased number of confirmed Influenza cases and/or patients reporting Influenza Like Illnesses(ILI).
Rochester is among the areas feeling the impact of these viruses. And, at this time, Rochester General Hospital and Newark-Wayne Community Hospital are limiting the number of patient visitors to TWO at a time. In addition, we are asking that all visitors be in good health.
The Messenger-Post reports that Thompson Health in Canandaigua has imposed visitor restrictions at its M.M. Ewing Continuing Care Center. The Long Island Press quotes officials at the Nassau University Medical Center as stating that their emergency department traffic is double the normal volume. Oswego County Today reports that the upstate county has seen about 700 confirmed flu cases thus far.
New data released by the New York State Health Department on Jan.9 shows that the flu outbreak in the state continues to grow. Reporting from medical care providers shows that 6.8 percent of all visits in the week ending Jan. 5 were for influenza-like illnesses (ILI). An influenza-associated pediatric death was reported during the week, with a total of 2 recorded for the influenza season that began Oct. 1.
The report covers all of New York State other than New York City. The city's health department is a week behind the state. Its most current report, through Dec. 29, shows an ILI rate of 5.2 percent. The city is struggling without a number of hospital emergency departments and clinics which were damaged by Hurricane Sandy.