Flu season brings record numbers for pediatric patients at VCU Health

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — It has been a rough couple of days for ten-year-old Zye’Asia Lyons and her six-year-old sister, Malaysia Morris.

“They were fine at first, but then that’s when the fever kicked in, the chills,” explains their mother, Shantel Glascoe.

Glascoe, who recently had the flu herself, knew it was time to take her daughters to the Pediatric Emergency Department (ED) at VCU.

Dr. Jonathan Silverman says about a third of young patients seen over the weekend by the ED staff had flu symptoms.

“We’ve upped our staffing some in order to still be able to provide the best care for all kids, but on busy days the waiting room still does get fuller than it otherwise would,” he says.

He adds the volume of young patients is about double what it normally is.

According to Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU, three to six kids hospitalized each day has the flu.

“We’re not sure if it’s going to get worse before it gets better or not,” says Dr. Silverman.

That’s because the flu season peak typically happens anywhere over the next four weeks.

Dr. Silverman says there is also often a second wave of the flu.

He urges parents to be vigilant to prevent the spread of the virus.

“Most children with influenza actually do just fine at home, and they can follow up with their doctor either by home or in person,” he recommends. “Anytime you come to a doctor’s office or an emergency department, there are a whole bunch of other sick children there.”Find 8News on 

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