Flu outbreak continues but slows in Knox County

By Stephen Betts | Feb 14, 2018
Source: File

Rockland — The flu continued to land people in the hospital last week in Knox County, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

There were 23 new cases of influenza confirmed in Knox County for the week ending Feb. 10, according to the state agency. Ten people had to be admitted to the hospital because of the flu.

The week earlier, there had been 35 new cases, with 17 people hospitalized. The peak was the week ending Jan. 20, when 51 cases were confirmed.

Last week, the Knox Center nursing home in Rockland closed its doors to visits from the public in an effort to stem the spread of the illness. Elderly people are among those most at risk of complications from the flu.

Since Oct. 1, there have been 217 cases of the flu confirmed in Knox County with 102 people admitted to the hospital.

Dr. Mark Fourre, chief executive officer of Coastal Healthcare Alliance, said that while there have been a lot of people admitted to Pen Bay Medical Center with the flu, the staff has been able to handle the cases. He said no patients have had to be sent to other hospitals because of the number of cases.

Some hospitals in Maine have reported being flooded with patients and transferring some to other facilities.

Fourre said that some staff at the hospital have also contracted the flu, but the remaining staff have done a fantastic job of handling the increased caseloads.

Statewide last week, there were 831 news influenza cases confirmed in Maine and 125 people hospitalized. There were four deaths reported in the state last week from the flu. Since Oct. 1, 43 people across the state have died from influenza.

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