If you thought flu season started slowing down, think again. The state’s flu-related death toll surpassed scary levels last week and will probably surpass 100 by next week.
FOX 61 reports that 97 people so far have died from the flu. 78 of those flu-related deaths were people 65 and older. 11 people between the ages of 50 and 64 also died. As for the rest, one person died between the ages of 25 to 49 years while one 6-year-old and one 10-year-old died.
Also, 1,951 people required hospitalization.
The state DPH also added an increasing amount of people requiring hospitalization due to flu-related pneumonia.
All in all, the state DPH says this is the deadliest flu season on record since 2009 and it could even become worse at this pace. Influenza still remains a widespread issue.
In addition, 6,000 recorded cases of the flu have so far been reported by area doctors and health clinics. That’s up 300 from last week alone.
Fairfield County leads with the most recorded cases at 1,920 reports. New Haven County is a close 2nd with 1,860 cases. However, Hartford remains a distant third with 973 reports.
Scariest of all, peak flu season is still isn’t here. While the CDC said that last week they saw no change in the amount of new cases,it looks like this illness pulled a fast one on all of us. So, it’ll be a little bit longer before peak season.
On top of that, doctors reported seeing patients coming down with the flu TWICE this year. As awful as it sounds, if you already battled the illness, know it was only one strain. You’re still at risk for coming down with the other one.
Strain A and Strain B both remain volatile.
Nick Bennett, the head of the Infectious Diseases and Immunology Department at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, says:
“Flu A tends to come early and flu B tends to come late. […] We could just call them Fred and Barney and they’re two completely different viruses and Fred comes first and Barney comes second. We call them the flu because they feel the same. They are definitely related viruses, but they’re genetically, very distinct.”
While influenza A cases appear to be dropping off, the B-strain is just starting to rev up.
Because of this, Dr. Raul Pino encourages people over the age of 65 or those with kids under 5-years-old to seek the flu shot.
Doctors also recommend staying home if you or a child of yours falls ill because influenza is so contagious. Health officials also recommend washing your hands and using sanitary wipes on surfaces before eating on them.
Nationwide, over 40,000 people have died. Around 857 of them were due to pneumonia caused by the flu.