ALBANY, N .Y. (AP) — State health officials say the number of New Yorkers with confirmed cases of the flu keeps rising but the number of people requiring hospitalization has declined.

Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Thursday that more than 16,800 laboratory-confirmed cases of influenza were reported last week to the Department of Health. That's a 7 percent increase from the previous week.

Officials say the number of new hospitalizations from the flu dropped 3 percent to just over 2,400 last week.

Cuomo continues to urge New Yorkers to get the flu vaccine.

Since the flu was declared prevalent in New York in December, more than 69,000 cases of lab-confirmed cases have been reported, with around 14,350 people needing hospitalization.

There have been five pediatric deaths blamed on the flu this season.