MSDH reports first death from pediatric flu
Published 7:00 am Friday, March 13, 2015
This week, the Mississippi State Department of Health confirmed the state’s first death from pediatric flu for the 2014-2015 flu season.
According to the release, the individual was under the age of 18 and lived in central Mississippi. Since 2007, there have been 14 reported pediatric flu deaths.
“This is another reminder that influenza infections can lead to serious complications and in some cases, death,” MSDH State Epidemiologist Dr. Thomas Dobbs said in the release. “Peak flu season in Mississippi typically runs from January through March. We know the virus is still very active and is still causing infections throughout the state.”
Obtaining the flu vaccine is the most effective way to prevent infection, Dobbs said in the release. The vaccine can reduce risks of complications and death.
Dobbs suggests that people practice good hygiene, stay home when sick and wash hands frequently.
“All persons six months of age and older should receive the flu vaccination and it is still recommended as long as flu transmission is ongoing,” Dobbs said in the release.
According to the MSDH release, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that more than 49,000 people die and 200,000 are hospitalized each year due to the flu.
According to MSDH, flu symptoms include fever, cough, fatigue, sore throat, headache, muscle aches and runny or stuffy nose.
For more information about the flu, visit the MSDH website at www.healthms.com.