Syracuse area hospitals are on 'diversion' due to the massive flu outbreak.

When there are not enough hospital beds for those who need to be admitted, then the hospital must go on diversion. Diversion means a hospital may notify the EMS system of a temporary inability to provide care in the emergency department (ED) and request ambulances divert patients to an alternate hospital facility.

Dr. Max Berube, director of the emergency department at St. Joseph's Hospital Health Center, tells Syracuse.com the intense flu season is gripping Central New York. "The number of cases we've been diagnosing has been on an upward trend, and we don't think we've reached the peak yet."

The NYS Department of Health says the week of 1/13/18 there were 6,083 laboratory-confirmed influenza reports, a 54% increase over the previous week.

Steps to Take if You Get the Flu

  • If you get very sick, are pregnant, or are 65 years or older, or are otherwise at high risk of flu-related complications, call your doctor. You might need antiviral drugs to treat flu.
  • Stay at home and rest.
  • Avoid close contact with well people in your house so you won’t make them sick.
  • Drink plenty of water and other clear liquids to prevent fluid loss (dehydration).

When caring for people who have the flu:

  • Avoid being face to face with the sick person. If possible, it is best to spend the least amount of time in close contact with a sick person.
  • When holding sick children, place their chin on your shoulder so they will not cough in your face.
  • Wash your hands often and right away.
  • If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Make sure to wash your hands after touching the sick person. Wash after handling their tissues or laundry.

[Information from Syracuse.com and cdc.gov]

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