A 4-year-old child has died of the flu in Riverside County, carrying California’s death toll from influenza so far this season to 52. The child, whose name isn’t released yet by the officials, had no core health issues and hadn’t been vaccinated against the flu, said public health officer Dr. Cameron Kaiser of Riverside Country.
Kaiser said that this is a tragic reminder that flu can still kill people and that children are predominantly vulnerable to the illness. He also added that get your flu shot and get protected.
The child was living in the southwest part of the county. He died outside the country, and local officials were notified this month only. Officials call the strain of influenza H1N1 the most dangerous for children and pregnant women.
This season, nationwide, 16 children have died from the flu, reports suggested by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The flu season begins from October and runs through May. The peak timing for the same is February. Flu cases are increasing day by day suggesting that the seasons haven’t yet reached its height. The officials are encouraging everyone who is over six months of age to get vaccinated. This vaccine takes approximately two weeks to take effect. In the last year, 185 children nationwide were died due to flu, 80% of whom were not vaccinated, hinted the CDC.
Experts claim that the flu shot decreases a pregnant woman’s chance of catching influenza by 40 percent and offers immunity for her baby. People who get the flu shot but then still find the flu usually experience less severe symptoms. In total, this year’s flu season is expected to be less dangerous than last year’s. Still, according to state data, in October to the end of the last week, around 52 people in California died of the flu. Half of the deaths were of people over the age of 65.
This season across the nation 6 to 7 million people have caught the flu, half of whom have sought medical care for their illness. Around 69,000 to 84,000 people have been hospitalized for the flu so far, federal officials say. To stop the spread of flu, the CDC recommends staying home for 24 hours, covering nose and mouth with a tissue whenever you cough or sneeze and also wash your hands.
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