ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York officials have declared that the flu is "prevalent" in the state.
This declaration initiates a state regulation that will require healthcare professionals who are not vaccinated for influenza to wear masks in areas where patients are present.
The state Department of Health reports that as of Nov. 30 there have been 3,158 laboratory-confirmed cases, 691 hospitalizations and one child death.
Health officials say anyone older than 6 months old should be vaccinated, particularly the elderly and children younger than 2 years old.
The Times Union reports that vaccines change each year based on predictions on what strains of the virus will be prevalent.