Catherine Ross, NBC 5 Collin County Reporter
Collin County reports three more flu-related deaths, bringing the county's death toll to seven. But healthy officials believe the flu season may have already peaked.
Plano emergency physicians say an empty emergency room waiting area at Texas Health Plano is a good sign that the flu season has peaked.
During the first two weeks of January, Dr. Martha Grimm estimates she spent 70 percent of time and resources caring for flu-like symptoms. Today, that number is down to about 20 percent.
"It definitely taxed all the health care systems," Grimm said. "I think it'll continue to go down. My only concern is if this Influenza B is going to be a new peak. It's hard to say, because just in the past week, I've seen more cases of that that I didn’t see during the initial peak."
County numbers, reflecting the prior week in the flu fight, don't have enough data about the Type B influenza to indicate a trend.
Flu season usually peaks in February, though this year, doctors say it started with a force before Christmas.
In the Collin County weekly report, health officials report seven total influenza-related deaths.
The prior week's report had indicated four, though the department did not immediately confirm if the additional cases were new deaths, or if they were confirmations of suspected flu cases.
At Texas Star Pharmacy in Plano, Dr. Donna Parsky notes that the "flu is kind of elusive" when it comes to a patient's recovery.
"Because your immune system is already down, that's why so many of them get over the flu, but then the secondary infections set in, like pneumonia," she said.
Collin County's report did show a slight decrease in flu cases between the second and third weeks of January.