Milwaukee child dies from complications related to influenza
MILWAUKEE, WI (WXOW) - -
A Milwaukee child has died from complications related to influenza.
Because of patient confidentiality laws and out of respect for the family, neither the Department of Health Services nor the City of Milwaukee Health Department will be releasing the decedent's sex, age, race or location of residence. In Wisconsin, deaths from influenza are only reportable if they are pediatric (under age 18) deaths.
“Seasonal influenza is not life-threatening for most people; however, this is a serious disease that can be especially dangerous for children, older adults, individuals with compromised immune systems and those with chronic health illnesses,” said Karen McKeown, State Health Officer. “It is still important to get a flu shot to help protect yourself and your friends and loved ones who may be at high risk for complications from the flu.” The flu shot can reduce the severity of flu symptoms among those who get the flu, and reduce rates of hospitalization and death.
The Department of Health Services says influenza is a contagious respiratory disease caused by a virus. The flu vaccine helps prevent complications that can be caused by the flu, such as pneumonia or hospitalization. With few exceptions, officials recommend that individuals aged six months and older be immunized. Getting vaccinated against influenza is especially important for people aged 50 and older, and those with underlying health conditions. Getting vaccinated is equally important for those who have frequent contact with young children, as children are hospitalized or die from flu complications each year in the United States.
Flu season for Wisconsin generally occurs between late October and May, with peak activity around late January or early February.
Influenza can range from mild to severe, and in some cases can cause life-threatening complications. Symptoms can come on quickly and include fever, headache, dry cough, sore throat, nasal congestion, body aches and tiredness. If someone does get the flu after getting vaccinated, it is more likely to be a milder case.
To get your flu vaccine and vaccine for your family, contact your health care provider, pharmacy, local public health department or tribal health clinic.
Health officials also suggest these important steps:
·Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. ·Cover your cough or sneeze with your upper sleeve, and try to avoid touching your face with your hand. If you use a tissue, throw it away after one use. ·Use your own drinking cups and straws. ·Avoid being exposed to people who are sick with flu-like symptoms. ·Eat nutritious meals, get plenty of rest and do not smoke. ·Frequently clean commonly touched surfaces (e.g., doorknobs, refrigerator handle, telephone, faucets).
If you think you have the flu, call your doctor. Stay home, rest, drink plenty of liquids, and avoid using alcohol and tobacco.
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