The flu continues to be widespread in Connecticut and grew by 500 cases to 3,758 this past week, but the illness overall seems to have peaked and is on a downward trend, state public health officials said Thursday.

Emergency rooms, outpatient visits and hospital admissions all reported declines this past week, according to the state Department of Public Health.

“There is still a lot of flu around, but we do have a downward trend in all our surveillance data,” said Deputy State Epidemiologist Lynn Sosa.

Emergency room trips for fever/flu symptoms, for example, dropped from 12.4 percent to 10.2 percent for the week ending Jan. 26.

The most flu cases continue to be reported in Fairfield County (1,035) and New Haven County (828), followed by Hartford (761), Middlesex (304), Windham (284) Litchfield (149) and Tolland (131).

Flu numbers, especially for hospitalizations and lab reports, always lag a bit, Sosa said, and despite the apparent decline, people should not let down their guard.

“Even though we probably have peaked, the message is still the same. There is still a lot of flu activity, and people should still be vaccinated, cover their mouths when they cough and stay home if they are sick,” Sosa said. “The flu season is a long season. … [and it’s] around for a few more months.”

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