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Canada: Children are bearing the brunt of this year's flu season, health officials say

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  • Canada: Children are bearing the brunt of this year's flu season, health officials say


    Children are bearing the brunt of this year's flu season, health officials say
    More than 3 times as many kids hospitalized in Canada due to influenza compared to this time last year
    Nicole Ireland ? CBC News ? Posted: Dec 25, 2018 10:54 AM ET | Last Updated: 4 hours ago

    Many Canadian children are spending the holidays battling the flu and other respiratory illnesses ? and an early start to the flu season might be partly to blame, pediatricians and public health officials say.

    "We're seeing a tremendous amount of viral illness [in children]," said Dr. Catherine Farrell, a pediatric intensive care specialist at CHU Sainte-Justine, a pediatric and maternal care hospital in Montreal.

    "Our hospitals are bursting to the seams. Our emergency rooms are really overloaded. Our inpatient units are full and we have a very high occupation rate with respiratory illness in the intensive care unit ... and it's the same with the other intensive care units here in Quebec," Farrell said...

  • #2
    H1N1 Influenza Strain Warning ? 414 Kids Hospitalized And 4 Dead In Canada

    The H1N1 influenza strain has caused 24 deaths this flu season, across Canada. Out of those 24 deaths, 4 dead among children were recorded, while 414 kids hospitalized. Even though the death tool and hospitalization numbers are still lower in comparison to 2018, the virologists warned that H1N1 is affecting kids and young adult more than the rest of the population. Thus, taking the flu shot is the best ally against influenza season this year.
    ?The severe illness that we?re seeing is unexpected, and to be honest, unprecedented from previous years. We?re seeing more admissions to the intensive care unit and what we know is that the kids that have been admitted to the ICU, none of them have had the vaccine,? explained Dr. Tanya Holt, the head of pediatric intensive care unit at the Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon, for CTV News.
    The experts have already announced that this year?s flu season is led by H1N1 influenza strain which is similar to the swine flu that affected the world about ten years ago, but which is not going to be as severe as that one.
    ?We?ve almost had a doubling of presentations to the emergency department, and that?s caused? prolonged wait times for patients who are coming for evaluation. Our peak numbers have been over 300 patients a day. The ?sweet? spot for an emergency like ours is about 200 patients a day, so we?ve really seen an increase in volumes,? said Dr. Harley Eisman from the hospital?s pediatric emergency service for CTV News.
    ?The severe cases have often been the toddlers. But we?re also seeing it in kids that are less than 12. They?re ending up on the ventilator, they?re ending up having prolonged stays in the intensive care unit, and some of them have even had complications,? also explained Tanya Holt.
    ?This particular virus [H1N1 influenza strain] is a match to the strain contained in this year?s influenza vaccine. I do encourage Canadians over the age of six months to get the flu shot. It?s not too late,? concluded Canada?s Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam for CTV News.


    • #3

      6 flu deaths among kids reported in Canada
      Child deaths all among those under the age of 10
      CBC News ? Posted: Jan 11, 2019 5:34 PM ET | Last Updated: 4 hours ago

      Flu activity remains high in Canada, according to a new report released on Friday that confirms children and teens were hit hard.

      A total of 17,743 laboratory-confirmed flu cases have been reported, the Public Health Agency of Canada said in its weekly FluWatch report.

      Six pediatric deaths occurred so far this season, all children under the age of 10. There were also 95 pediatric admissions to ICU for flu...