Miami Valley leads Ohio in flu hospitalizations

Local News

CLARK COUNTY, Ohio (WDTN) – Hospitalizations due to the flu in Clark County doubled in just one week and with students going back to school, health officials are worried that number will continue to rise.

Mercy Health Hospital system said they’ve had 116 patients test positive for the flu this season, more than a third of them just last week.

Charles Patterson of Clark County Combined Health District said right now, Montgomery County is coming in first statewide for the number of hospitalizations and Clark County ranks third.

“We’re now shooting out a prevention message, but we’re saying, don’t prevent something that may happen,” said Patterson. “We’re saying prevent something that is happening in our community today.”

Our area accounts for 32 percent of flu related hospitalizations statewide and Patterson said that’s just an indicator of flu activity since many cases don’t get hospitalized.

“One of our concerns specifically is that those two weeks are the two weeks that kids weren’t in school,” said Patterson.

So he said they’re working with the school districts to keep everyone healthy as flu cases continue to rise.

“We’re asking the superintendents throughout our region to consider sending an all call or one call now,” said Patterson. “It’s the same message we’ve been giving, washing your hands, making sure you’re vaccinated, and covering coughs and sneezes, but this is something we’re now saying it because it’s here.”

One other point Patterson said is different about this flu season is that this strain doesn’t always present a fever, so if a person feels feverish and is exhibiting those symptoms, to stay home until those symptoms break.

Patterson also said there’s typically a second spike before flu season ends, so he urges you if you have not yet to get a vaccine.

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