Disease specialists: We may be headed for worst flu season in a decade
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - A dangerous trend in flu numbers has infectious disease specialists sounding the alarm about some potential problems in caring for those who are sick.
We may be headed for the worst flu season in a decade
She's on the mend now, but for the past few days Bonnie admits: "The coughing and the trying to breathe, it's really hard."
Doctor Stephen Blatt says she's one of the patients he worries about getting the flu.
For those with chronic medical conditions: "Some of them ended up with respiratory failure and ending up in the ICU on respirators," Blatt said.
That's because it appears a bad strain is the one rapidly spreading, according to flu trackers with the centers for disease control.
What they indicated was that there's been some sort of a mutation with one of the strains, and so that's not covered so that seems to be the one that is being shared and spreading around.
Carolyn Fiutem showed how what's different than in previous years is just about a month ago only a few states showed widespread activity. They are covered in brown.
By last week, the entire country is widespread all at the same time.
For healthcare providers at hospitals, that means a lot more admissions than in previous years.
It also means potential supply problems.
There are issues with getting adequate medications, adequate supplies, some of the places in town are trying to run out of the equipment to isolate places because we are seeing so much flu.
In addition to that, however, it's the littlest lives they are worried about as well, already here in this neonatal intensive care unit. They are restricting access and they are asking anyone who might have concerns to wear a mask since it's not just the flu it's the type of flu.
"We are seeing lots of aggressive cases," Blatt said. "That's extremely dangerous for those who are born early and those who have struggled to stay well."
Luckily for Bonnie, she says with Dr. Blatt's team, she has the best at her bedside:
"He's saved my life a few times, literally saved my life."
Experts say it's too soon to know if we have peaked or if the worst of the season is yet to come.