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Flu cases on the rise statewide

The state Health Department says influenza is now prevalent in New York state, which means health care workers who haven't had a flu shot must wear procedural masks around patients.

Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker says everyone over 6 months old is encouraged to get a flu shot.

The agency says there have been over 1,800 confirmed cases of influenza in 54 counties.

That includes about 100 here in Monroe County, and Commissioner of Public Health, Dr. Michael Mendoza, says people who are sick should stay home, and do everything they can to protect friends, loved ones and co-workers from getting the virus.

"Do anything you can to prevent the transmission.  Because while the influenza may be at best uncomfortable for some people, it is deadly for some.  And we know every year there are people who succumb to the illness.  And we want to do everything we can to prevent that from happening," he said.

Dr. Mendoza says good hand washing is very important because it can prevent the contraction of illness, and also prevent the transmission of an illness.

He says it's not too late to get vaccinated. 

"Flu is coming, it's increasing in numbers right now, and right now is the time to get your flu shot," he said.