NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — In a typical winter, cases of the flu peak in mid-February. This year, the flu spread quickly throughout the state causing it to peak earlier than usual. Doctors are now seeing a positive trend, as flu cases and deaths are trending down.
“We’ll start the year with a bit of good news here. The flu cases are trending down,” Yale Medicine Dr. F. Perry Wilson said.
The Connecticut Department of Public Health graph above shows a peak of 11 flu deaths in the week ending on Dec. 17. Flu deaths then proceed to decline in the two weeks after that peak.
“Still a lot of flu in the community, about 15% test positivity for flu. So that’s still pretty high. It’s spreading but less though and what that suggests is that this early peak we saw of flu might mean that we’re just having a weirdly early flu season as opposed to a really bad flu season,” Dr. Wilson said.
Dr. Wilson is hoping that flu cases continue to decrease. Unlike COVID, the flu can be extremely dangerous for young children.
Dr. Wilson also weighed in on going back to wearing masks indoors, as is recommended by state health leaders.
“The wise thing to do if you’re in a crowded interior space with a lot of other people around is to wear a mask and particularly a well-fitting mask, one that’s really going to protect you from the infected people who might be around you,” Dr. Wilson said.
He understands how some people feel about going back to masking frequently.
“90 plus percent of people masking everywhere, I don’t think the public has a stomach for that. So I think the messaging needs to be more on the individual level. Now, get a good mask for yourself if you’re worried about protecting yourself,” Dr. Wilson said.
Health experts remind the public that wearing masks can keep people from infecting those around them including vulnerable friends or family members.
The majority of covid and flu deaths continue to be people over sixty-five.