Virginia Department of Health reports first pediatric flu death of the season

FileDr. Cathy Slemp

It has investigated a total of 61 flu outbreaks during the 2019-20 flu season through February 1 and has received reports of 773 pneumonia- and influenza-associated deaths.

She said the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported 19 million cases of the flu nationwide this year, with 180,000 hospitalizations.

A teenager in Virginia's Northern region has died from complications associated with influenza.

"We have been looking at general trends and we are definitely not on the downward slope yet".

DeBenedet says flu season in Hamilton typically arrives in November when they see they start seeing the first lab-confirmed cases. The period usually lasts from late fall to early spring.

The last influenza-associated pediatric death was reported during the 2017-18 flu season, the department said.

Since the end of September, 2,095 people have hospitalized because of the flu in Colorado and the state is considered to have widespread flu activity.

Kendra Findley, Administrator of Community Health and Epidemiology, said the number of flu cases only includes the people who went to the hospital and got diagnosed from a doctor.


Typical symptoms are the traditional fever, headache, body aches, chills, tiredness, weakness, cough, runny eyes, stuffy nose and sore throat.

"The effectiveness varies, but on average is 60 per cent effective", Loeb said.

If you get the flu, proper care can lessen symptoms and decrease the time you are ill.

To locate a seasonal flu vaccine clinic near you, visit www.vdh.virginia.gov or contact your local health department.

"Seventy to 85 percent of flu-related deaths the past few years are in those 65 years and older, so it can be quite serious when it hits the older population", Chan noted.

Slemp says residents should wash hands frequently with warm soapy water, if you're sick stay until you are fever-free for at least 24-hours, cover your cough and promptly throw away tissues.

"If you're sick, stay at home, get your rest, avoid going to work or going to school and getting others sick".

Try to avoid close contact with sick people.

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