65 kids a day are rushed to local ER with flu-like symptoms

Simple Health

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The 2019-20 flu season is keeping doctors busy at Dell Children’s Medical Center.

“It’s shaping up to be one of the busiest in the last 10 years or so,” said Dr. Eric Higginbotham, the Chief of Pediatric Emergency Medicine.

Dell Children’s reports a marked increase the last week of January, during which they saw 65 kids a day with flu symptoms.

It’s not the worst season Higginbotham has seen but it’s close.

“2009 is going to be the closest I’ve seen to this flu season,” says Higginbotham. “That’s when we had the medical tents out front. This season isn’t as bad as yet.”

He said there are enough resources to keep up with this season’s demand but expects to see a rise in cases over the next few weeks.

“Influenza B activity has kind of died out now but what I’m seeing now is more influenza A.” Both strains cause the same kind of symptoms according to Higginbotham to include a runny nose, cough, aches, fatigue and a fever.

The Austin Regional Clinic is also reporting a rise in influenza A cases in January with 966 positive flu test results during the week of January 19-25, of which 693 tested positive for the influenza A strain.

Dr. Higginbotham suggests the results mean flu season shows no sign of slowing down.

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