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November 10, 2015 > First flu death of the season

First flu death of the season

Submitted By Anita Gore / Orville Thomas

California Department of Public Health (CDPH) State Public Health Officer Dr. Karen Smith announced on November 4, that CDPH has received the first report of an influenza-associated fatality in a person under age 65 for the 2015-2016 flu season. The death occurred in Santa Clara County and serves as a somber reminder that influenza can cause serious illness or death.

Overall influenza activity in California remains sporadic, but Dr. Smith points out that influenza viruses circulate at their peak levels from December through April.

ÒNow is a good time to be vaccinated before the flu really spreads widely,Ó said Dr. Smith.

Two of this seasonÕs vaccine components, the influenza A (H3N2) and influenza B (Yamagata lineage) strains, have been updated to match the viruses Californians are likely to face during the 2015-2016 flu season.

Common symptoms of the flu include fever or feeling feverish, a cough and/or sore throat, a runny or stuffy nose, chills, fatigue and body aches. Children may also have nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.

Dr. Smith encourages Californians to contact their health care provider, physician office, clinic or pharmacy about obtaining the flu vaccine. Some local health departments may also offer low- or no-cost flu immunizations..To find a flu vaccine location near you, visit www.flu.gov.

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