Flu Cases in NY Expected to Set Record-High Levels This Season
New York State saw the second-highest number of weekly flu cases in the last 20 years and officials warn flu season still hasn't peaked.
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo reminded all New Yorkers to take recommended precautions to protect themselves from the flu as new numbers show flu activity still has not reached its peak this season.
Flu cases in New York this season are expected to set record-high levels since the New York State Department of Health began tracking flu cases during the 1998-99 season, officials say.
"As flu season has not yet peaked across New York, I urge everyone to remain vigilant and take simple precautions to protect themselves and their families," Cuomo said. "I encourage all New Yorkers older than six months to get their flu shot - it's not too late."
The latest influenza surveillance report for the week ending Feb. 8 shows seasonal flu activity continues to be widespread across New York State for the eleventh consecutive week.
As indicated in the report, there were 17,233 laboratory-confirmed flu cases reported to the State Department of Health, which is the second-highest weekly total in the last 20 years.
The most lab-confirmed influenza cases reported during a single week in a flu season was 18,252 in 2017-18.
There have been a total of 106,824 lab-confirmed cases reported in New York State this season, with three flu-associated pediatric deaths. Last week, 1,993 New Yorkers were hospitalized with lab-confirmed influenza. So far this season, there have been 15,541 flu-related hospitalizations.
"While flu activity is higher than usual this season and it has not yet peaked, taking basic preventive steps such as washing hands often, covering a cough or sneeze with your arm, and staying home when experiencing flu-like symptoms, will help prevent the spread of the flu," Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker said.
Every Hudson Valley county had over 50 confirmed cases of the flu during the past week.
Below are the confirmed cases of the flu in each local county:
Westchester County: 909
Orange County: 258
Rockland County: 242
Dutchess County: 158
Ulster County: 78
Putnam County: 61
Sullivan County: 55