The flu outbreak of 2013 is increasing in severity as other states follow the footsteps of Massachusetts and issue a public health emergency. With the death toll rising and more and more people getting severely ill, it makes sense to take a proactive step in curbing the spread of the virus.
New York has seen over 20,000 cases this season, compared with 4,400 last year. Thus, they have issued a public health emergency. This comes on the heels of the CDC's announcement that the flu has reached "epidemic" levels so far this year, with at least 20 children and many elderly dying from the virus.
"The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta said that deaths from the flu had reached epidemic levels, with at least 20 children having died nationwide. Officials cautioned that deaths from pneumonia and the flu typically reach epidemic levels for a week or two every year. The severity of the outbreak will be determined by how long the death toll remains high or if it climbs higher," said the New York Times.
It's scary to think of a flu epidemic. The first thing that comes to mind is the flu pandemic of 1918, in which more than 500 million people were infected across the globe. Hopefully, things will never, ever reach that level, but at the current rate of spreading, it's going to be a whopper of a season overall.
Are you worried about the flu outbreak? Are you or someone you know home sick with the virus?
Photo courtesy of WHEC