CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 18, 2013 |
As a nurse at a Downey hospital, Darlene Andres spends her days caring for postpartum mothers and their newborn babies. Andres urges new moms to get the flu vaccine before leaving. But Andres, 36, decided not to get the flu shot herself. Andres - a self-proclaimed "germ freak" - said she just washes her hands instead. "I heard from a lot of co-workers on the floors that they were getting a lot of symptoms after getting the flu vaccine," she said. "I kind of got scared. " On Friday, public health officials warned that the flu wreaking havoc elsewhere has finally arrived in California and is now causing widespread hospitalizations across the state.
January 15, 2013 |
Finally ready for a flu shot? First of all, what took you so darn long? Second, you might need a little patience. CVS Caremark and Rite Aid say they're running out of flu vaccines in some states as the unusually severe flu season drives up demand. In California, at least, it still looks like there's plenty of vaccine to go around. Forty-seven states are now experiencing widespread flu. That has resulted in more people making a beeline to pharmacies and doctors' offices in search of a cure.
January 15, 2013 |
With flu season likely to ramp up in Los Angeles in coming weeks, health officials and family doctors are trying to get out the word: There are some things you can do to avoid coming down with this year's flu. First, get your immunizations - it's not too late. This year's flu shot protects against three flu strains: two influenza A's (an H1N1, an H3N2) and one influenza B. These three strains have predominated among infections this year, so it's as good a preventive vaccine as can be expected.
January 12, 2013 |
New York's governor declared a state health emergency Saturday because of a flu epidemic that has sickened more than 19,000 people, giving pharmacists the right to immunize infants and children in hopes of curbing the spread of the potentially lethal virus. Under Gov. Andrew Cuomo's executive order, pharmacists for at least the next 30 days will be able to give flu shots to children as young as 6 months, a break from state law that usually limits them to immunizing those 18 years and older.
January 11, 2013 |
California public health officials are bracing for an increase in new flu patients in the coming weeks as the influenza outbreak that has engulfed 47 other states gears up here. Flu activity in California has been accelerating since late December and usually doesn't peak until February or March, state health officials said Friday. In Los Angeles County, 17 of the 71 confirmed flu cases this season have been recorded since Jan. 4. "Right now in Los Angeles, we're on the upswing," said Dr. Sharon Orrange, an internist and clinical professor at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. Dr. Ron Chapman, director of the state Department of Public Health, urged Californians to get flu shots if they hadn't already.
January 10, 2013 |
An early outbreak threatens to makes this year's influenza season one of the most difficult in recent years as public health officials brace for the worst. Hospitals in the Northeast, from New Jersey to Massachusetts, are reporting record numbers of emergency room visits related to flu-like illnesses, and Boston has declared a public health emergency. At least 41 states have reported widespread flu outbreaks, more than 2,250 people have been hospitalized and 18 children have died, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.
December 3, 2012 |
The flu season has gotten off to its quickest start in nearly a decade, a sign that it could be a bad year for the illness, officials said on Monday. Dr. Thomas Frieden, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, urged people to get a flu shot to minimize the impact of the deadly disease's spread. Speaking to publicize National Influenza Vaccination Week, Frieden said a flu shot was the best tool available to stop the spread of the disease, along with covering your mouth when coughing and washing your hands.
November 26, 2012 |
A new statistical model, built on search data from Google and principles from weather modeling, can predict flu outbreaks up to seven weeks in advance. The results, published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, signify a transition in the study of infectious disease from modeling past outbreaks and events to predicting future ones. The researchers, Jeffrey Shaman of Columbia University and Alicia Karspeck of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo., used data from the Google Flu Trends project, which keeps track of searches for flu-related topics and ties them to the geographic location of the searcher.
October 12, 2012 |
Flu season is upon us again, so the U.S. Centers for Disease Control has resumed publishing its weekly FluView Reports , which track influenza activity around the country. The report for the week ending Oct. 6, released Friday, showed low levels of flu activity. Of more than 2,800 lab specimens tested, 75 were positive (39 for strains of influenza A and 36 for strains of influenza B). No pediatric deaths from flu were reported, and numbers of flu-related pneumonia deaths were also low. No influenza activity was reported at all in Guam and 18 states.
February 24, 2012 |
It's the latest start for a flu season in 29 years, and thus far, severe cases have been few. But that doesn't necessarily mean Americans have dodged any seasonal illness bullets. Influenza is just beginning to gain a foothold around the country. "The flu season has officially begun," Dr. Joseph Bresee told reporters Friday morning during a briefing at the agency's headquarters in Atlanta. Infections have reached all 50 states, said Bresee, who is chief of the epidemiology prevention branch at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control's influenza division.