Flu Epidemic Crowding Emergency Rooms Around New Orleans
Jan 19 2018

Flu Epidemic Crowding Emergency Rooms Around New Orleans

By: Alexis Shook

With the widespread flu outbreaks, the emergency rooms of New Orleans are being flooded with patients seeking relief.

Dr. Adhikari, the medical director of the Emergency Department at Tulane Medical Center, reported that in December, Tulane Medical Center had 772 patients with flu symptoms, with 337 of the patients testing positive for the virus.

The influx of patients has caused the ERs to go into an S.O.S. rotation system, where ambulances evenly distribute patients to hospitals.

Dr. Katherine Baumgarten, infectious disease specialist with Ochsner Health System, said, “This strain (H3N2) is known for the body's response to the virus. It causes higher inflammation, which can result in higher fever and worsen other symptoms.” She also advised Louisiana residents to get vaccinated, as it is not too late.

The virus sweeping the country has doubled the number of new patients per hour.

If anyone is showing signs of the flu, Ochsner provides a line where patients can consult with a nurse: 1-800-231-5257.

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