Governor Cuomo is advising New Yorkers to get their flu shot as new numbers released yesterday show sharp inclines in lab-confirmed cases of the virus across the state.
State health officials last week reported 1,839 new lab-confirmed flu cases, which represents a 60% increase over the week prior.
The number of weekly hospitalizations also went up 32%, with 328 New Yorkers hospitalized due to flu-related symptoms.
Cuomo also directed Department of Health and other state agencies to brainstorm ways to encourage vaccinations among state workers and their families.
The governor got his flu shot in October.
“As flu cases continue to climb across the state, I am urging New Yorkers to protect themselves and their loved ones against this dangerous virus by getting vaccinated,” Governor Cuomo said. “The flu shot is still the best way to stay healthy during this season, and New Yorkers should take advantage of the expanded access to the flu vaccine and help prevent the spread of this virus.”
The latest increase in flu cases comes after State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker last week declared influenza prevalent in New York State, requiring all unvaccinated healthcare workers to wear protective masks in areas where patients are typically present.
Just under 5,000 lab-confirmed cases have been reported across the state so far this flu season, which typically runs from October through May. Those numbers include more than 1,000 flu-related hospitalizations and one flu-associated pediatric death.