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H1N1 influx

Parents worried about swine flu are crowding emergency rooms inToronto, forcing some to shut down other services to cope with a crushof new patients coming through their doors, officials said yesterday.

Parents worried about swine flu are crowding emergency rooms in Toronto, forcing some to shut down other services to cope with a crush of new patients coming through their doors, officials said yesterday.

The Hospital for Sick Children has seen patient volumes double over the last few days, a wave that started over the weekend, hospital officials said.

More than 300 patients came through the emergency room at Sick Kids over a 24-hour period Tuesday — more than double the number of children that usually come in at this time of year, said hospital spokeswoman Suzanne Gold.

The volume of cases is similar to what they see during peak flu season, which usually comes much later in the year, said Dr. Anne Matlow, the hospital’s medical director of infection prevention and control. H1N1 is the main respiratory virus being seen in the ER, but most of the cases are mild and children are being sent home with their parents, she added.

 
 
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