Banner Health News Center  

Ogallala Community Hospital’s flu season is typical – for now


OGALLALA, Neb. (Jan. 11, 2013) – As the flu begins to hit hard in other parts of the country, Ogallala Community Hospital officials said local numbers remain comparable to previous seasons.

According to Amy Stanley, RN, infection preventionist at OCH, the first positive tests for the flu at OCH occurred around Dec. 14. Since then, the Emergency department has seen an average of two people a day with flu-like symptoms. At its peak so far, the Emergency department saw five patients a day come in with those symptoms.

Only one person has been hospitalized with the flu, which is comparable to previous years.

Stanley said that the Banner Health Clinic in Ogallala has seen 45 patients who have tested positive for influenza, which also is comparable to previous years. The illness is hitting all ages. The largest group affected is 25-49, followed by children under 4. Stanley also noted that some cases have involved people who had already received a flu shot.

The best protection again the flu is to receive a flu shot. In addition, people should wash their hands properly and stay home from work or school if they have flu-like symptoms.

“It is not too late to be immunized for the flu,” Stanley said. “This season’s vaccine is a very good match with circulating strains.” Please call the Banner Health Clinic for information about vaccines, (308) 284-3645.

If flu symptoms last more than a week or are associated with a high fever, cough productive of colored phlegm, or difficulty breathing, patients need to be evaluated by a physician as soon as possible.

Ogallala Community Hospital is an 18-bed hospital owned by Banner Health, one of the country’s largest nonprofit health care systems. OCH offers services including emergency care, inpatient services, infusion therapy, medical imaging, orthopedics, surgery and women’s services.

Headquartered in Phoenix, Banner Health is one of the largest, nonprofit health care systems in the country. The system manages 23 acute-care hospitals, the Banner Health Network and Banner Medical Group, long-term care centers, outpatient surgery centers and an array of other services including family clinics, home care and hospice services, and a nursing registry. Banner Health is in seven states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Nebraska, Nevada and Wyoming

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