Flu spreads, Methodist E.R. busiest it has been in several years

By Audrey Williams

January 10, 2013 Updated Jan 10, 2013 at 11:38 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill -- Hospitals across the country and some here locally, are inundated with flu patients.

The Centers for Disease Control reports the number of patient visits for influenza-like illness is nearly at the peak of the 2007-2008 flu season which was considered moderately severe. It is still not as high as the 2009-2010 swine flu epidemic. However, health department officials say we still have not reached the peak of flu season.

At Methodist Medical Center in Peoria, Dr. John Miller said the Emergency Room is the busiest it has been in the past three to four years.

"We're even seeing hospitals sending patients in because they're so full from outlying communities too, so as you say, it's in epidemic proportions," said Dr. Miller.

He said hospital officials are asking anyone with flu-like symptoms to not visit patients, and are urging those who have not received a flu shot to do so immediately.