Three influenza-related pediatric deaths have occurred in New York during influenza season, the viral disease still being prevalent in 62 New York counties, according to data from the US Department of Health's Health Department. State.
Young people who have died are not identified by age, sex or place of residence. Their deaths occurred in recent weeks and were not connected. The flu season began in October and is currently at a peak.
Dr. Anthony Boutin, Chief Medical Officer of the Nassau University Medical Center, stated that the number of influenza patients in the NUMC emergency department was still high and that some patients had severe respiratory symptoms. He encourages anyone who is not vaccinated to seriously consider the influenza vaccine.
"I can tell you from the patients we see: they were really, really sick, young children and middle-aged people. We sent a lot of people home. But there are others we have organized in the emergency department, "Boutin said.
"Looking at the numbers between this year and last year, I think we have reached a peak," he added, citing the shock of the flu season. "But based on what we're seeing now, it could last another month or two."
Boutin said that the patients are so sick that they did not realize that their illness was caused by the affliction that goes around the world. "They did not know they had the flu. They were miserable, "he said.
Nationally, 41 child flu-related deaths have been recorded this season, which is much smaller than last year's lethal attack with such a fierce respiratory illness that some hospitals were short of beds.
Although child deaths are generally indicative of a fierce influenza season, this year does not compare to 2018, the year when nearly 200 children and adolescents succumbed to the flu as a whole from the country. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 70% of them would not have been vaccinated.
In total, last year's severe flu season claimed the lives of approximately 80,000 people of all ages, resulting in one of the highest rates of influenza deaths in 40 years.
However, while influenza activity remained widespread, the number of hospitalizations in New York began to decline on February 16th. By that time, the number of hospitalizations among people of all ages has decreased by 10%, according to the state's influenza surveillance report, which is updated regularly throughout the influenza season.
Another statistic in the state report indicates that, though the number of hospitalizations has decreased, the number of doctor visits for influenza has been increased. Nearly 5% of doctor visits in the country as a whole were influenza-like, a percentage higher than the expected level of 3.10% of the total number of doctor visits.
Throughout the influenza season, influenza A strains were the most prevalent in the circulation. The one identified most regularly this season by the Wadsworth Center, Albany State Laboratory, is strain A called H1N1, followed by H3N2, another strain of flu.
The same pattern has been observed in most parts of the country, with the exception of the southeast, where H3N2 is the most prevalent. A flu strain circulates in humans and in animals; Strains B, which usually appear at the end of the influenza season, only affect humans.
Earlier this month, Dr. Bruce Farber, Head of Infectious Diseases at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, told Newsday that strain H1N1 was the strain disproportionately observed in his hospital compared to H3N2. at the same time last year.
He added that the H1N1 flu tended to affect children more frequently than the elderly, as most children did not generally show signs of immunity to the virus. The one who circulates in this influenza season is a distant cousin of the swine flu virus that circumnavigated the world as a pandemic strain in 2009.