3 more die of flu in Allegheny County
Three more Allegheny County residents died of flu complications, health officials said Monday, bringing the total number of deaths to 14 this season.
A male resident in his mid-90s died within the past two weeks and two female residents, one in her early 90s and one in her early 40s, died within the past week, according to the Allegheny County Health Department. It is not known if any of the three had underlying medical conditions. Their identities were not released.
Since the October start of flu season, the virus has killed 14 people in Allegheny County, up from 9 total for the previous season, the health department said.
As of Saturday, county officials had confirmed 7,245 flu cases and 556 hospitalizations and 14 deaths during the 2017-18 flu season. That's up from 2,981 cases and 270 hospitalizations at the same time last year.
In a typical year, the flu kills about 36,000 people in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In Pennsylvania, more than 47,500 cases of flu have been reported.
The flu season officially begins in October and ends on the 20th week of the following year, the state said. It is estimated that 5 percent to 20 percent of people in Pennsylvania get the flu each year and 120 to 2,000 will die from flu-related complications.
H3N2 has been the predominant flu strain this season.
There are prescription antiviral drugs that can treat the #flu . If you have symptoms and are in a high risk group (kids <5, adults > 65, pregnant women, people w/ certain medical conditions) or are very sick or worried about your illness, contact your health care provider ASAP. pic.twitter.com/FDIqs40Kek— PA Department of Health (@PAHealthDept) February 12, 2018
Suzanne Elliott is a Tribune-Review staff writer. She can be reached at 412-871-2346, or firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter@41Suzanne.