The ages of those who died ranged from 44 to 91, and four had underlying medical conditions. To date, 11 flu deaths have been reported this season.
Furthermore, a total of 838 lab-confirmed flu cases were reported the week ending Feb. 20, compared to 599 diagnosed the previous week.
“It’s unfortunate five more people died from complications from the flu,” said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County public health officer. “Influenza activity has intensified and hundreds of new cases are being reported. People should get vaccinated now since the flu season can last through the spring and into the summer.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone 6 months and older get a flu vaccine every year. The vaccine is safe and effective. It takes about two weeks for immunity to develop.
The flu vaccine is available at doctors’ offices and retail pharmacies. Individuals without health insurance can visit the Community Health Center or County public health center to get vaccinated. For a list of locations, visit sdiz.org or call 2-1-1.