Flu season coming to a close — finally

Zoe Greszler • May 20, 2017 at 12:00 PM

The flu season is finally coming to an end.

The Huron County Public Health said that the flu activity has dropped “significantly” over the past month. Flu Week 16 (two weeks ago) had no hospitalizations due to the flu, same as Week 14. Week 15 had one.

This is an improvement compared to the rest of the flu season which saw as many as 20 hospitalizations and three deaths in one week during its peak. Week 16 marked the first time state-wide flu distribution was labeled as “regional” rather than “widespread” since the first of the year. The county’s flu activity was “minimal” according to HCPH.

“There have only been two flu hospitalizations in the past month,” epidemiologist Sydney Cmar said. “It’s finally dropping down.”

Cmar said the county ended up with 73 hospitalizations for the season, compared to last year’s 24, and 2015’s 26 hospitalizations, adding it was a “bad season.”

“The activity is now minimal and emergency room complaints of flu are down, so it’s definitely coming to an end — which is good,” she said.

The board of health will also be compiling its school absentee data to see if there are any trends throughout the year and in certain districts when children get sick according to Cmar and health commissioner Tim Hollinger.

“What does all of that data actually mean?” Cmar said. “That’s what we want to find out. We’ve been collecting it (for a couple years now), and we want to work out some trends. It could be that some schools don’t send kids home (as readily) as others, or some parents may not know when to send their children to school and when to keep them home. We can see ‘Do we need to push more ‘When to keep your kid home education for certain schools or not?’ Working with this data and the schools can help us know what our community needs to know.”

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