Doctors are reporting an early rise in flu cases ahead of the “peak”.
The Department of Health said usually the flu season starts in October and lasts through May, often peaking in February. However, the department is reporting an early rise this year. State health officials said the total number of confirmed cases this season in New York is 8,253 with one official saying there are “more cases at this point in time than the past three flu seasons.”
The number of new confirmed flu cases in New York just for the week ending Dec. 14 was 3,264, which is a 77% increase. Of those 3,264 cases, 2,028 were in New York City, 319 were on Long Island and 119 were in Westchester.
Dr. Dyan Hes, medical director at Gramercy Pediatrics, said the number of people who have the flu is likely even higher than the number of confirmed cases, since not everyone who comes in with symptoms is tested.
Getting a flu vaccine is the best way for people to protect themselves during the flu season, health officials said, but Hes says you must still monitor your children even if you vaccinate them.