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Hospitals Prepare for Flu Season, Covid-19 Uptick

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The Yale New Haven Health System says right now, it is prepared to handle flu season alongside an uptick in Coronavirus cases.

Connecticut Department of Public Health reports the Coronavirus positivity rate reached 1.6% on Monday, with 155 patients hospitalized. 

Dr. Tom Balcezak is chief clinical officer at the Yale New Haven Health System. He says the network has many seasons of experience with the flu and will take precautions to make sure anyone with respiratory symptoms will be isolated from general hospital patients. Balcezak continues to watch the pandemic data closely as cases inch up in eastern Connecticut and New Haven.

“We’re sharing our data, coordinating with other hospitals, with the governor’s office making sure that we’re all aware of upticks as they’re happening and it seems to be that we’re in the midst of one right now,” Balcezak says.

Balcezak says he thinks the hospitals have what they need in terms of testing, personal protective gear, supplies, bed capacity and staff. Among the innovations to tackle the flu season is a technique for testing for coronavirus and the flu with a single swab sample. 

The Connecticut Department of Public Health reported fewer than 100 flu-related deaths last flu season. That’s compared to 4,500 deaths by coronavirus since March. Two Covid-19 deaths occured over the weekend.

Balcezak says the best way to prevent the spread of influenza and Coronavirus is to wear masks, continue to social distance, and wash hands thoroughly.