Monday, January 14, 2013

Montefiore Medical Center Extends Hours at Community Urgent Care Sites as Severe Flu Season Gains Momentum

Bronx Borough President Diaz Joins Montefiore In Urging Public to Get Vaccinated
Montefiore Medical Center infectious disease experts are urging the public to get vaccinated against influenza in one of the most severe and longest flu seasons in a decade. To manage the surge of patients, Montefiore is extending hours at several of its community urgent care sites.
Bronx East Urgent Care Center (2300 Westchester Ave.)
  • Monday-Friday – 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Saturday-Sunday – 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Grand Concourse Urgent Care Center (2532 Grand Concourse)
  • Monday-Friday – 2 p.m. to 11 p.m.
  • Saturday-Sunday – 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For the majority of people, flu symptoms (e.g., high fever, sore throat, cough, fatigue, headaches and muscle aches) are relatively mild, and those patients should stay home and call their primary care physician. Only those with severe symptoms or those living with a chronic medical condition (e.g., asthma, heart disease, diabetes, neurological and kidney disorders, as well as other conditions that weaken the immune system) who are suffering from the flu should visit the emergency department.
“Our clinics and emergency departments are overwhelmingly busy with a significant increase in both adult and pediatric flu cases,” said Dr. Brian Currie, vice president and medical director for research at Montefiore. “We have seen an increase in the influx of flu patients over recent weeks with as many as 40 percent of people seeking care in our emergency departments testing positive for influenza.”
Those at greatest risk of complications from flu are children under the age of two, pregnant women and adults over the age of 65. People are urged to stay home and not go to school or work to if they are sick in order to prevent transmission of the flu.
It is not too late to get vaccinated. Antibodies that protect against the flu develop in about two weeks after vaccination, and the flu season is expected to continue through the spring. Those interested in getting a flu shot can visit clinics run by the Department of Health, area hospitals, including Montefiore, and commercial pharmacies like Walgreens, CVS and Duane Reade.
“Through Montefiore’s vast network of sites and extension of its operating hours, most Bronxites can easily access a flu shot,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. “I ask that all, not just those who are most vulnerable, but ALL Bronxites get the flu shot, and I thank Montefiore for the leadership they have taken to address the flu outbreak.”

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