A 'flunami' year: Had the flu yet?
- January 14, 2011 11:59 AM |
- By POV
(Evan Vucci/Associated Press)
Ontario's health minister says the seasonal flu outbreak this year is one of the worst in years -- and is urging Ontarians to get a flu shot.
The number of confirmed flu cases in Ontario is six times higher than the average for early January.
"Not only are you protecting yourself from the flu, but you are also protecting your family by preventing the illness from spreading," said Health Minister Deb Matthews.
Dr. Michael Gardam, chief infection control officer at Toronto's University Health Network, says Ontario appears to be taking the brunt of the flu cases this year.
"Most of the country's having a very quiet flu season. It seems to be Toronto, Montreal, and the areas surrounding those two cities that seem to be particularly hard hit," he said.
Health-care workers have begun to refer to the rise in fluenza-like symptoms in Ontario, Manitoba and Quebec as a "flunami," according to The Globe and Mail.
The number of flu cases is also having an impact on health-care services at hospitals in the Greater Toronto Area. A few have had to take the extraordinary step of cancelling some elective surgeries, either because surgical beds are being taken up or there aren't enough respirators free for those surgical patients.
Have you had the flu this year? Have you had influenza-like symptoms? Does the spread of flu seem more serious to you this year than in previous years? Take our survey and share your stories in the conversation below.
Related P.O.V. Flu vaccine: Will you get yours?
(This survey is not scientific. It is based on readers' responses.)
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