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By adamg - 11/9/21 - 1:37 pm

Northeastern University reports that samples from the Covid-19 swabs from students or staff who have flu-like symptoms are now also being tested for, well, the flu, in addition to Covid-19. Read more.

By adamg - 2/10/21 - 9:13 pm

A Kennedy School professor gave the medical mecca of the universe an F for its Covid-19 vaccination program so far - a program for which the governor has had to call out the National Guard because all these old people were being forced to stand outside for hours to get a shot in Springfield. Read more.

By adamg - 1/15/21 - 11:22 pm

WBZ reports the Massachusetts Department of Public Health has dropped a requirement that students need to get a flu shot, partly because there has been so little flu this season, partly because it needs to concentrate on getting people vaccinated against Covid-19 rather than on checking flu-shot compliance.

By adamg - 11/12/20 - 2:25 pm

Several parents today sued Gov. Baker over his order requiring all students under 30 to get flu shots or risk getting kicked out of school, saying it infringes on their First Amendment rights to freedom of religion and their rights to raise their children as they see fit. Read more.

By adamg - 10/7/20 - 12:09 pm

Researchers at MIT, Harvard and Mass. General report progress in developing a "universal" flu vaccine that would work by getting the body to recognize a flu protein that rarely mutates but which the human immune system normally does not recognize. Read more.

By adamg - 8/19/20 - 4:30 pm

The state Department of Public Health announced today that it is now requiring all students and participants in pre-K programs to get a flu shot by Dec. 31 - as part of an effort to reduce "flu-related illness and ​the overall impact of respiratory illness during the COVID-19 pandemic." Read more.

By adamg - 2/1/20 - 1:41 pm

The state Department of Public Health and the University of Massachusetts Boston reported today that a UMass Boston student recently returned from Wuhan, China, was diagnosed with the 2019 novel coronavirus, the first in the state. Read more.

By adamg - 8/27/18 - 8:14 pm
Aboard the receiving ship at Commonwealth Pier in Boston

Sailors working out at Commonwealth Pier during the Great War. Source.

In August, 1918, Commonwealth Pier - today's World Trade Center - was a bustling place, with hundreds of sailors arriving there to await their permanent assignments for the "Great War" that the US had entered the year before.

Sometime on Aug. 27 or 28, two sailors reported, yes, flu-like symptoms. Read more.

By adamg - 2/8/18 - 7:02 pm

WCVB reports on the death of the baby this afternoon on Deering Road, near Harvard Street.

By adamg - 10/7/15 - 2:23 pm

BIDMC's Flu Fighters Shake It Off

Flu-fighting staffers at Beth Israel get down to this. sick. beat.

H/t Nick McNulty.

By adamg - 2/3/15 - 2:59 pm
Flu on the increase in Boston

ILI="Influenza-like illness." Source: BPHC.

The Boston Public Health Commission reports an increase in flu and flu-like cases over the last few weeks in Boston.

By adamg - 1/18/13 - 3:40 pm

Stats for last week show Boston experienced the same number of flu cases as the week before - and that ER visits for flu like symptoms actually went up.

Statewide, the number of flu cases dipped from the week before.

By adamg - 1/11/13 - 11:24 am

Confirmed flu cases (l) and rates of ER visits for flu-like symptoms. Source: BPHC.Confirmed flu cases (l) and rates of ER visits for flu-like symptoms. Source: BPHC.

City statistics for the week ending Jan. 5 show Roxbury and Hyde Park had the highest percentage of emergency-room visits due to flu-like symptoms while Charlestown had the highest per-capita number of confirmed flu cases. The latest Boston Public Health Commission flu report shows a total of 750 confirmed flu cases city wide for this flu season - 231 of them since Dec. 31. Most are Influenza A with a small number of Influenza B cases.

On Wednesday, Mayor Menino declared a public-health emergency in part because health-care facilities are now at or near capacity. One out of four of the confirmed cases have been among people who had to be hospitalized; four people have died.

Neighborhood health centers are running free flu-shot clinics for Boston residents this weekend and next week.

By adamg - 1/10/13 - 1:48 pm

The city plans to ring the phones - more than half belonging to senior citizens - following yesterday's declaration of a public-health emergency. A transcript:

Hi. This is Dr. Anita Barry calling from the Boston Public Health Commission. Yesterday, Mayor Menino declared a public health emergency because of the high number of influenza cases in the City of Boston.

Residents who have not already been vaccinated against influenza this year are urged to get vaccinated by calling their doctor, or visiting a nearby community health center during a free vaccination clinic.

By adamg - 1/10/13 - 9:05 am

Why, some are rolling up their sleeves and getting flu shots (although probably not in Somerville) on air. And then shooting footage of their syringes.

By adamg - 1/9/13 - 12:27 pm

Weekly ER visits due to flu-like symptoms, week ending 12/29. Source.Weekly ER visits in Boston due to flu-like symptoms, week ending 12/29. Source: BPHC.

Keep Calm and Wash HandsMayor Menino made the declaration this morning based on 700 flu confirmed flu cases - compared to 70 confirmed flu cases all of last winter. Four people, all seniors, have died.

Aside from increasing efforts to get people vaccinated, the declaration is a recognition that local hospitals are now near or at capacity due to an influx of people with flu-like symptoms.

The city plans to stock community-health centers with flu vaccine and open them this weekend to provide free doses to Boston residents. See the schedule. For more details, contact the Mayor's Health Line at 617-534-5050 9 am. to 5 p.m. on weekdays, or the Mayor's 24-hour Hotline at 617-635-4500 after hours.

By adamg - 11/7/11 - 1:31 pm

CommonHealth alerts us to a Children's Hospital study that found kids infected with MRSA seemed to be especially at risk to death by flu. In some areas, up to 9% of kids now have the antibiotic-resistant bacteria living in their noses; such kids had an eightfold risk of severe and sometimes fatal H1N1 flu infections. And this, they say, is why kids need to get flu shots.

By adamg - 10/6/11 - 6:03 pm

A Boston man in his 40s has died after coming down with the flu, the Boston Public Health Commission said today. The man was particularly vulnerable because of unspecified underlying health issues, the commission said.

The commission says everybody should get a flu shot and take other precautions to reduce the odds of contracting or spreading the virus, including frequent hand washing or sanitizing, staying home with flu symptoms and for at least one day after your fever breaks, covering your mouth when coughing and avoiding sick people.

By adamg - 1/11/11 - 10:26 am

The Boston Public Health Commission reports a sharp rise in flu cases in the under-5 set likely signals the start of more widespread flu cases among adults.

Emergency-room visits for flu-like symptoms in general is up sharply over the past month, but especially among children under 5, the commission said today. Lab-test sampling - not everybody who shows up at an ER with fevery aches has samples sent for testing - shows 21% of cases are now among kids under 5, the commission said.

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