Winter Flu Outbreak Hits Students, UHS

Ill undergraduates are flocking to University Health Services (UHS) in what health officials called the worst flu outbreak in the last few years.

"[The syndrome] seems very prevalent, and probably more so than the last couple of years that I've been here," said Dr. Charles H. Weingarten, chief of medicine at UHS.

Weingarten said a significant number of undergraduates have entered UHS with a "syndrome similar to the flu," but he said it was not an epidemic.

"Fortunately, we haven't seen anybody that's terribly sick," he said.

Nevertheless, Weingarten said UHS officials have treated some serious cases in recent weeks.


"We have seen people that have had seizures or have been incapacitated for as much as a week, but nothing life threatening."

Weingarten said the Massachusetts Department of Public Health has confirmed eight different cases of the flu in laboratory testing.

And students are not the only ones affected.

Nurses at Beth Israel Hospital are also falling prey to the flu-like condition.

"They're dropping like flies," said Virginia M. Minichiello, nurse manager for the employee health service. "Just in today's one unit, we had four out of 10 assistants out, which is a pretty large percentage."

Minichiello said the ailment was best treated by bed rest, frequent fluid intake and Tylenol for fevers and achiness.

Weingarten said the recent surge available for comment.

On Tuesday, though, the rapper said he was surprised by the widespread negative reaction to "Cop Killer."

"I didn't think it was a controversial record because I thought everybody hated the police," Ice T said. "Everyone I know hates the police."

Ogletree said he did not condone Ice T's message, adding that he agreed with the mayor about the difficult job of police officers today.

Ogletree said, however, that there has not been a single act of violence against law enforcement officials linked to "Cop Killer."