NC health department confirms 23 flu deaths so far this season

29 January, 2019, 04:13 | Author: Israel Montgomery
  • Alex Hogan  STAT

Flu season generally lasts into March or even April, Henry adds.

As of January 12, more than 600 children aged 16 and under had been hospitalized, with 93 of them ending up in intensive care and at least seven - all under age 10 - dying from complications of the flu, says the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC).

"The vaccine is not ideal", said Schaffner.

Skowronski says the vaccine's effectiveness preventing H1N1 infection is comparable to that found by Australia during its most recent flu season. Last year, the H3N2 strain, which is known to cause more severe illness, dominated.

Many thought the flu season was winding down and Waters said there was a second wave of influenza about three weeks ago. The proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and flu was 7.2%, which is slightly higher than the usual threshold of 7.1 percent for this time of year, the CDC said, based on data from the National Center for Health Statistics.

Last season, just 38 per cent of Canadian adults got the flu shot, with vaccine uptake varying by age and risk factors for complications, a PHAC spokesperson said.

"We are continuing to see flu circulate, with early signs that activity is peaking".

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An increase in flu activity over the last week has led to school closures in at least 12 states, including New Jersey.

Young children have been especially vulnerable to H1N1 this season. "But the other important things are to wash your hands regularly, cover your mouth when you cough, and stay home and away from others if you're sick". The organization estimates that flu has resulted in between 9.2 million and 35.6 million illnesses each year in the United States and several deaths.

"If you're vaccinated, you have a 72 percent lower chance of getting the flu".

The CDC recommends vaccination against the flu for everyone 6 months and older. "But give the vaccine credit for softening the blow".

"Having said that, we have a lot of younger people and children who have ended up in hospital because the sheer numbers of people who have been affected".

More people have remained healthier and avoided infection from a flu virus in the 2018-19 influenza season thus far compared to the previous season - which ultimately resulted in more than 250 deaths and almost 1,900 hospitalizations by its end - according to the latest report from the Iowa Department of Public Health.

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