Flu season has hit Delaware early and hard.
According to the Delaware Department of Health, the state has 632 lab confirmed cases of the flu compared to just 70 cases during the same time last year. The flu has caused the deaths of four elderly Delawareans this season.
People between the ages of 5-15 years old have the highest number of confirmed flue cases, prompting many local hospitals to impose visiting restrictions for minors.
Bayhealth Kent General and Bayhealth Milford are temporarily restricting children under the age of 12 from visiting patients at the hospitals. They’re also restricting visitors of any age who display any flu-like symptoms.
Christiana Care is restricting anyone under the age of 16 from visiting the women’s and children’s area in their hospitals.
Flu-like symptoms including fever, chills, body aches, cough, sore throat, headache, diarrhea, and vomiting.
The influenza A H3N2, and a mutated version of the virus, are the most common strains causing illness this season.
DHS advocates that a flu shot will prevent the flu or lesson the severity of mutated strains.