Flu-related visits to the emergency room stayed high for the third week in a row, according to information released today (Friday, Jan. 18) in the Kane County Health Department’s Weekly Influenza Surveillance Summary.
After dipping a bit last week, the percentage of flu-related ER visits actually went up in Week 2, which includes hospital data from Jan. 6 to Jan. 12.
Three weeks earlier, Kane County reported the first Kane County pediatric death of the flu season.
Influenza surveillance for Kane County Health Department includes the collection of data from hospital emergency rooms, laboratories, and public schools. Participants have reported the following aggregate measures for Week 2:
- Among five reporting hospital emergency rooms, 5.0 percent of visits were for influenza-like illness .
- During Week 2, 6 labs reported that 77 of 579 (13.3 percent) specimens tested for influenza were positive. Of these 77 specimens:
- 72 (93.5 percent) were positive for Influenza A
- 5 (6.5 percent) was positive for Influenza B
- The ILI absenteeism rate for public schools in Kane County was 0.19 percent. No public school was closed due to increased ILI activity.
- As of the week ending January 12, there were 8 influenza-related ICU admissions reported to the health department. One influenza- associated pediatric death has been reported.
- To date, no outbreaks of influenza have been reported in Long-Term Care/Assisted Living facilities in Kane County.
ER Visits By Age
Visits for influenza-like illness to reporting emergency rooms during Week 52 had the following age distribution:
- 0-4 years: 28.3 percent of all ILI visits
- 5-24 years: 24.3 percent of all ILI visits
- 25-64 years: 34.5 percent of all ILI visits
- 65+ years: 12.8 percent of all ILI visits
Throughout the season, KCHD will provide updated information on the total number of people visiting the emergency room for ILI, and what age groups make up those visits.
Access Full Report: HERE
KCHD Website Main Flu Page: HERE
Flu’s Impact Nationally
With the 2018-2019 flu season well under way, the Centers For Disease Control estimated that, so far this season, between about 6 million and 7 million people have been sick with flu.
Up to half of those people have sought medical care for their illness, and between 69,000 and 84,000 people have been hospitalized from flu.
Despite these lower severity indicators, flu is still taking a serious toll this season. This past week, CDC reported an additional three flu pediatric deaths. To date there have been 16 flu pediatric deaths nationwide.
“Given that significant influenza activity is likely to continue to occur, severity indicators are expected to rise,” the CDC said.
SOURCE: Kane County Health Department, CDC Influenza Surveillance Reports
If You Get Sick
Most healthy people recover from the flu without complications. If you get the flu:
- Stay home from work or school.
- Get lots of rest, drink plenty of liquids, and avoid using alcohol and tobacco.
- There are over-the-counter (OTC) medications to relieve the symptoms of the flu (but never give aspirin to children or teenagers who have flu-like symptoms, particularly fever).
- Remember that serious illness from the flu is more likely in certain groups of people including people 65 years of age and older, pregnant women, people with certain chronic medical conditions and young children.
- Consult your doctor early on for the best treatment, but also be aware of emergency warning signs that require urgent medical attention.