Health Team

NC records fifth flu death this season

Posted December 6, 2018 3:02 p.m. EST

— One more North Carolina resident died of a flu-related illness last week, the state Department of Health and Human Services said Thursday.

Five flu-related deaths have been recorded since the beginning of October. While the previous four victims were age 65 or older, the latest death was a person between the ages of 25 and 49, DHHS said.

During the 2017-18 flu season, nearly 400 deaths in North Carolina were attributed to the flu, the highest death toll in a single flu season since state officials began publicly reporting flu deaths in 2009.

Of those, 290 were people who were 65 years and older, while seven of them were under the age of 18, state officials said.

In North Carolina, flu infections are most common from late fall to early spring, with activity usually peaking in January or February, according to state health officials.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends flu vaccinations for everyone 6 months of age and older.

For those who have been diagnosed with the flu, CDC guidelines say patients should:

  • Stay home when sick until fever-free for at least 24 hours.
  • Wash hands frequently, preferably with soap and water.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue and then discard the tissue promptly.