Dr. Jeffrey Kahn at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas says the ER has been flooded with young flu patients over the past two weeks.
"We’re seeing so much influenza right now that we are no longer testing for influenza. Or, I should say we’re only testing under very specific circumstances," said Kahn. " So, right now when he see children in the Children’s Emergency Department with an influenza-like illness, it’s very likely they have flu.”
Dr. Kahn urges parents to limit emergency room visits to children who are having breathing difficulties, have dry lips, sunken eyes, and are listless or unresponsive. He says flu can easily be spread among patients in the close confines of an emergency waiting room – and that’s not a good thing.
Dr. Kahn says the three types of flu showing up are the three in the vaccine, and it’s not too late to get a flu shot. Flu season will be around for another six to eight weeks.
The Texas Department of State Health Services reports three flu-related deaths this season, all children.
The most recent death, reported a week ago in the Houston area was a 9 year old with no underlying medical conditions.
Texas is one of a dozen states reporting high flu activity. But state officials say there have been no outbreaks or school closures, just widespread cases.