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The Flu Now Widespread In Ohio and Cleveland Doctors Inundated

By Fabrice Pierre-Toussaint

Contributing Writer for Telegraph Local | See my LinkedIn

 

 

 

According to Cleveland, Northeast Ohio doctors’ offices and urgent care facilities have filled up with people sick with the flu. Dr. Roy Buchinsky, Director of Wellness for University Hospitals has stated “The physician offices are seeing an increase in influenza cases at Ahuja medical center this week.We are seeing mainly Influenza B activity at this time. Treatment with specific anti-viral medications are effective in decreasing both the duration and the extent of the illness. Hospital urgent care and emergency rooms are also witnessing increased patient volume d/t influenza related illnesses.” According to Healthline, data from 2017 to 2918 flu season showed that around 84 percent of the flu case was Influenza A and the 16 percent of the Influenza B type. Both similar in severity and rates of illness and death. Influenza C is the mildest one in adults but should be taken seriously when it’s a child under age 2.

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Sadly, it was reported this week that Ohio had its first flu death of the season, a 16-year-old girl from Northeast Ohio. Buchinsky stated, “The tragic death of a local high school student in Cuyahoga County this week highlights the rare but real complication of the influenza virus. Typically, the very young and the old (65 and older) are at higher risks of complications from the Influenza virus. This can include dehydration, Pneumonia and rarely death.” He emphasized the importance of the flu shots despite other opinions, “Vaccines are not perfect, but they are powerful in preventing the flu illness. It is not too late to get your flu vaccine if you have not yet received one this season,” 

“Influenza is impacting every corner of the state,” Dr. Mark Hurst, medical director of the Ohio Department of Health (ODH), has announced to the  Dayton Daily News. “It’s been evolving very quickly.” According to WKYC.com, the county breakdown of it is 

  • Cuyahoga County: 135
  • Geauga County: 2
  • Lake County: 7
  • Lorain County: 12
  • Medina County: 6
  • Portage County: 4
  • Stark County: 13
  • Summit County: 23                                                                                                                                                                           

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So far the biggest number of influenza-related hospitalizations has been in Montgomery County with 204 so far this season. According to the Ohio Department of Health, the easiest way to protect yourself from the flu is to get a seasonal flu vaccine every year. Most experts think that flu viruses are spread mostly through droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk.Sometimes, a person might also get the flu by touching a surface or object that has flu virus on it and then touching their own mouth or nose. ODH also recommends washing your hands, covering your cough, and practicing healthy habits as ways to help prevent the spread of flu for yourself and others. Flu season in Ohio can begin as early as October and run as late as March. However, it is not uncommon for sporadic cases to appear all year long. Most people who get the flu usually recover in one to two weeks, yet the flu is  deadly.

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