Severe flu season, Coronavirus worries keeping Lexington pharmacies busy

Posted at 4:49 PM, Feb 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-04 17:49:56-05

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — The severe flu season and worries about the coronavirus have been keeping local pharmacies busy.

Pharmacist Gene Thompson has been helping people get well in Lexington for nearly 40 years.

“I’ve enjoyed it. I enjoy my customers that’s the main reason I do it. I enjoy the physicians and the nurses we work with,” said Thompson.

He can confirm from experience that this flu season is a bad one.

“It’s just a lot of flu out there right now in the school systems,” said Thompson.

At Professional Pharmacy in Lexington, he said he’s been busy filling anti-viral prescriptions for people fighting the flu.

“Xofluza 20mg is another treatment besides Tamiflu, I’m not able to get the 20mg strength right now it’s on back order,” said Thompson.

Thompson said besides over-the-counter cold and flu remedies, there’s another product that’s been flying off the shelves.

“I’ll tell you something that’s been hard to get are the masks, the protective masks. I think the coronavirus may have spurred some of that. Those things have been sold-out all-over town,” said Thompson.

Thompson had some masks arrive today, but those won’t last long.

He tells us he has had customers come in talking about the coronavirus.

But he wants to remind people the flu is a bigger concern.

“Last week we'd had like 156 deaths from the corona in china, but we'd had like 8,000 deaths from the flu in this country. So we probably just need to get the flu shot and pay attention to that right now,” said Thompson.

While the death toll from the Coronavirus in China continues to rise, health experts say the risk to Americans that are in the states is still very low.

They encourage people to get the flu shot, and regularly wash hands for at least 20 seconds.