Flu cases rising 'faster and earlier' in central New York
Public health officials in Onondaga County are sounding the alarm about this year’s flu season, and they’re asking everyone to take precautions.
Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon got his flu shot Monday, despite a fear of needles. He said the flu is back, and he wants to set a good example for the community,
"I know that there's a little bit of fatigue related to shots and vaccines through the community, but at the same time, specifically for our seniors, people can get very sick," said McMahon.
Onondaga County Health Commissioner Dr. Katie Anderson said flu cases are rising faster and earlier this year. She said it’s one of the three viruses that are hitting the community hard. RSV cases appear to be on the decline, but Anderson said COVID-19 and the flu are still straining the health care system at multiple levels.
"Not just the hospitals, but also the clinics, in particular the pediatric clinics,” said Anderson.
Anderson said it’s a good idea to get the flu and COVID-19 vaccines and to take other public health measures.
“I think that it’s time to reconsider wearing masks when you’re out in public, and I’d even go as far to advise it, and people may consider having family members rapid test for COVID before they get together,” said Anderson.
Anderson said the good news is this year’s flu vaccine is a good match for the strains that are circulating. She said she hopes as many people as possible get vaccinated. Also, if you’re having trouble finding vaccines, especially for young children, reach out to the Onondaga County Health Department.
For weekly updates on flu numbers, check the New York State Department of Health website here.