New York - Gov. Gets Flu Shot; Number Of NYC Cases Higher Than In Past Years
New York - Gov. Andrew Cuomo has received a flu shot to urge people to get the inoculations during a particularly serious flu season. After getting his shot at a press conference Thursday, Cuomo received a lollipop from state Health Commissioner Nirav Shah.
Shah says more than 19,000 flu cases have been reported this year, compared to just over 4,000 last year. Shah said two children died from the flu in New York and it’s not too late to get shots to protect against the disease.
Cuomo said the shot didn’t hurt at all.
New York City’s hospital emergency rooms are seeing more cases of the flu than they have in the past few years, according to city health commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley.
He says in the last week or two, about five percent of people coming into emergency rooms have influenza-like symptoms. That’s compared to rates of two percent of visits in other years.
Farley urges people who haven’t gotten a flu shot to get one. He says the city started seeing cases in early November and expects it to be around for another two months.
The common cold and flu are caused by different viruses but can have some similar symptoms, making them tough to tell apart. In general, the flu is worse and symptoms are more intense.
Here are some tips from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Roche, the maker of Tamiflu:
• COLDS: Usual symptoms include stuffy or runny nose, sore throat and sneezing. Coughs are hacking and productive. It’s unusual to have fever, chills, headaches and body aches, and if they do occur, they are mild.
• FLU: Fever is usually present, along with chills, headache and moderate-to-severe body aches and tiredness. Symptoms can come on rapidly, within three to six hours. Coughs are dry and unproductive, and sore throats are less common.
• PREVENTION: To avoid colds and flu, wash your hands with warm water and soap after you’ve been out in public or around sick people. Don’t share cups or utensils. And get a flu vaccination — officials say it’s not too late, even in places where flu is raging.
• TREATMENT: People with colds or mild cases of the flu should get plenty of rest and fluids. Those with severe symptoms, such as a high fever or difficulty breathing, should see a doctor and may be prescribed antiviral drugs or other medications. Children should not be given aspirin without a doctor’s approval.
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