The flu is causing concern around the country and doctors at Staten Island University Hospital say the number of flu cases being reported this season is alarming. NY1's Mara Montalbano filed the following report.
Linda Ragusa went to the Walgreens pharmacy in the Mariners Harbor section of Staten Island on Thursday for a flu shot. She said she wants to protect herself after hearing about the widespread toll the virus has taken on many parts of the country.
"I've had the flu. I know what it's like, so I'm not doing it again," Raguso said. "I'm going to get my flu shot now."
Another Mariners Harbor resident, Raymond Lopez, on the other hand, said he does not believe in getting the flu shot.
"They say there's a flu epidemic, but I'm not seeing it. I'm not seeing it in the workplace and I'm not seeing it in my home or amongst my friends," Lopez said.
Doctors at Staten Island University Hospital said they are seeing a spike in cases and that this flu season appears worse than in years past.
"What we're really seeing is that this is a very interesting year because the people coming in into the emergency department are people who just didn't get the flu shot, because the flu shot worked this year," said Dr. Brahim Ardolic of SIUH. "So if you have the flu, I don't want to say it's your fault, but you really should have gotten your flu shot."
While doctors recommend getting a flu shot in October, they said it is not too late to get one now.
Some other tips to help you get through the flu season include:
Wash your hands frequently, especially if you take public transportation.
Initial symptoms include fever and body aches. If you feel these coming on, stay home from work or school.
If your symptoms progress to the point where you cannot function properly, go to the doctor.