Four more Dallas County residents have died from flu-related illnesses, bringing the total to 78 dead in one of the area's worst flu seasons in decades, Dallas County Health and Human Services announced Monday.
Since September 1, 2017, when the flu season began, there have been 915 lab-confirmed cases of Influenza in Ottawa, which is up from 721 by this time last flu season. This is the largest number of deaths recorded in one week, as the previous high was 30 from February 4-10.
Their report for the week ending March 9 shows there were 33 lab-confirmed cases of Influenza in Ottawa, 83 fewer cases than just the week before.
NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard on Tuesday said 650 people, including a couple of children, died across the state past year due to the flu.
Officials also explored why this year's vaccine had reduced effectiveness against one particular strain of influenza type A known as H3N2.
While flu season is now more than 5 months old, the county recommends that all county residents older than 6 months get a flu shot if they haven't done so already. 69 of 106 respiratory outbreaks at long-term care facilities so far this season have been some variety of influenza (either A, B, or both).
"Older adults, individuals with chronic health conditions, pregnant women, young children and infants are more vulnerable to flu illness", said Dr. Christopher Perkins, DCHHS's medical director.