The Butler County health department has received a report that a Butler County adult has died of influenza.
Health Commissioner Jenny Bailer said the department received the report by chance, as it only tracks pediatric influenza deaths and hospitalizations. Details about the person who died were not immediately available.
She said as of Monday afternoon, there have been no pediatric deaths reported.
Bailer said there has been an increase with influenza hospitalizations in Butler County this flu season, but the numbers are on par with the three-year average.
“More people are getting sick, but not more than the average amounts in the past three years,” she said.
There had been 31 hospitalizations due to the flu through Dec. 28, according to the latest information from the Butler County General Health District, 14 of which were reported in the week ending on Dec. 28.
The week prior, only four people were hospitalized.
The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat and sometimes the lungs. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Medical professionals say annual flu vaccines are the best way to prevent flu.
Flu symptoms can include fever (not everyone gets a fever), cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, fatigue, and sometimes diarrhea and vomiting.
The most important step in flu prevention is the annual flu vaccine, which medical professionals say reduces flu-related illnesses and the risk of serious flu complications.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends everyday preventive actions to slow the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses, like the flu:
- stay away from people who are sick,
- covering coughs and sneezes, and
- frequent hand-washing.
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