McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

Local News

January 23, 2013

FLU:

McAlester Urgent Care treats 82 cases of flu so far this year

OKLAHOMA CITY — The flu season is in full swing in the McAlester area, with  many of those stricken pouring into health care providers in the city.

“Certainly, we’ve seen an influx in seasonal flu and non-flu viral infections,” said Dr. Dennis Staggs, director of emergency services at the McAlester Regional Health Center.

Despite the influx of patients, emergency personnel at the McAlester hospital have been able to handle the situation and have not diverted any patients to other facilities because of the patient load, according to Staggs.

Patients have also been pouring into the Urgent Care facility on the McAlester hospital’s campus.

“During January, we’ve had 82 confirmed cases of the flu,” Jackie Turnbull, R.N., said Tuesday from the Urgent Care offices in McAlester.

Judy Sutton, an LPN at the McAlester Urgent Care facility, said the patients have not been confined to any one age group.

“It’s all ages,” Turnbull said. When the regular waiting room becomes too full, “We have an outside lobby where people can wait,” Sutton said.

The flu season appears to have hit the McAlester area heaviest with the new year.

“It hit in January — it’s not slacking off,” Sutton said.

As for ways to try and avoid the flu, she advised to get a vaccination and use good hand-washing practices. Those who already have flu symptoms should “cover the cough” to keep from spreading the illness, she said.

Meanwhile, the flu vaccine supply on hand at the Urgent Care facility was dwindling.

“We have 20 vaccinations left,” Sutton said Tuesday.

Patients have also been pouring into the Warren Clinic in McAlester.

“It’s been really pretty steady with flu cases over the last 10 days or two weeks,” Dr. Larry Lewis said Tuesday. “There’s been a steady stream.”

He noticed an increase in flu activity this year when compared with some of the years past.

“It’s had more of an impact this year than we’ve seen over the past couple of years,” Lewis said.,

For the week of Jan. 13-18 alone, the lab at the Warren Clinic tested 77 patients for influenza.

“Thirty were positive,” Lewis said, with 20 of the patients testing positive for the A strain and 10 testing positive for the B strain.

Genetic material differentiates the two strains, according to health experts.

Influenza A can cause moderate to severe illness in all age groups and infects humans and other animals. Influenza B causes milder disease and affects only humans, primarily children, according to the Immunization Action Coalition website.

The Warren Clinic has plenty of vaccine on hand, Lewis  said early Tuesday.

As of Jan. 15, there had been eight influenza deaths statewide, including the death of one adult male in Pittsburg County, said Pittsburg County Health Department Administrator Mike Echelle.

During the time period running from Sept. 30 to Jan. 15, the had been 484 influenza hospitalizations statewide, he said.

Echelle expected that number to rise with the release of updated numbers from the Oklahoma State Department of Health this week.

As of Tuesday morning, the Pittsburg County Health Department was down to 12 doses of vaccinations for adults; 72 vaccines for children and 34 “high dose” influenza vaccinations for individuals 65 and older, Echelle said.

He expected to get an additional supply of vaccines delivered this week.

For more on this story, see the print or electronic editions of the McAlester News-Capital. Click here for print edition home delivery or click here to see the Smart Edition for your computer, tablet, e-reader or smartphone.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Powers: Good Friday, then and now

    Chris Powers, of First United Methodist Church, spoke Friday about the meaning of Good Friday —what it meant to the people of Jesus’ day, and what it means to believers today.

    April 19, 2014

  • mc-safety2.jpg OHP slates free motorcycle safety course

    The Oklahoma Highway Patrol will be back in McAlester to give a free motorcycle safety course on April 26.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • equality-mcdaniel.jpg Couple seeks to help homosexual community in McAlester

    A McAlester woman says she and her spouse are working to bring equality to McAlester.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Look what's going on downtown McAlester tonight

    Tonight, area residents are invited to join other community members in front of the old Hunts building at the northwest corner of Choctaw Avenue and Second Street in downtown McAlester to listen and to play music in an open street jam, karaoke, cruise-in and to enjoy one of McAlester's two downtown districts. Set-up starts at 6 p.m., jam will be underway by 7 p.m. and at approximately 8 p.m. karaoke all the while cars cruise in. Everyone should feel free to bring lawn chairs and grills, instruments and music equipment, or classic, modified, modern -- all -- show cars. There are no contests or prizes planned, just community fellowship. 

    April 18, 2014

  • Police Badge MCC.jpg Detective's Dispatch: Buckle up

    It only takes a few seconds to put your seat belt on. These few seconds could change the rest of your life!

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • KTC Proclamation McAlester KTC students compete in state FCCLA contest

    Kiamichi Technology Center, McAlester Campus, recently participated in the 2014 Oklahoma State Students Taking Action with Recognition Events for Family, Career and Community Leaders of America.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 4-18-BREAKFAST1.jpg Lackey: Challenge of today's church is to empower Christ

    Christians everywhere make up the Body of Christ.
    Tom Lackey, of the First Presbyterian Church, delivered that message to the fourth gathering of those participating in the Men’s Holy Week Breakfasts.
    Lackey spoke to a group estimated at more than 100 men and boys at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in McAlester on Thursday.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Moon Shadow McAlester crowd gathers to watch lunar eclipse

    More than 60 local and area residents gathered to endure the cold temperatures and late night hours to witness one of Mother Nature’s celestial night shows Tuesday morning.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Luncheon speaker Hundreds attend ladies luncheon

    The 42 Annual Women’s Holy Week Salad Luncheon took place Thursday at the Scottish Rite Masonic Temple.

    April 17, 2014 3 Photos

  • Copper wire $5,000 reward offered after theft of copper wire

    A $5,000 reward is being offered in connection with a theft of copper wire causing some $400,000 in damage and causing a Savanna asphalt company to shut down operations, police say.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

Seasonal Content
AP Video
Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism
NDN Video
Jabari Parker's Top 5 Plays From Duke Career Kourtney Kardashian Is a Bikini Babe More Manpower Than Ever Expected At 4/20 Rally Debunk'd: Miley Cyrus AIDS, Cheeseburgers Cause Cancer, Military Warning Bill Previewing the NBA playoffs Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite My name is Cocaine Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Lohan Gets Candid About Her Sex List The 2014 New York Auto Show Meet Johnny Manziel's New Girlfriend Chelsea Clinton Announces Pregnancy Funny: Celebrating Easter with Martha Stewart and Friends Man Accuses 'X-Men' Director Bryan Singer of Sexually Abusing Him As a Teenager Man hit with $525 federal fine after he doesn't pay for soda refill Lea Michele & Naya Rivera Feuding? Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft Singing Nun Belts Out Cyndi Lauper New West, Texas Explosion Video Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.