Fresno County reports 22nd flu-related death; Valley toll 34

The Fresno BeeFebruary 12, 2014 

A shot is administered to a patient at the American Legion Hall in Fresno during a flu vaccine clinic Thursday, Jan. 31, 2013.

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Fresno County health officials Wednesday reported the county's 22nd flu-related death.

The county's latest flu death was a woman in her 40s. She had medical problems that put her at higher risk for complications, and she had not gotten a flu shot, health officials said.

So far this flu season, 34 people have died of influenza in the central San Joaquin Valley. Kings and Merced counties have had four deaths each and Madera and Tulare counties have had two deaths each.

Flu shots information

• Everyone over the age of 6 months is recommended to get a flu shot.

• Vaccination of high-risk persons is especially important to decrease their risk of severe flu illness.

• People at high risk of serious flu complications include young children, pregnant women, people with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease and people 65 years and older.

• Vaccination also is important for health-care workers and other people who live with or care for high-risk people to keep from spreading flu to high-risk people.

• Children younger than 6 months are at high risk of serious flu illness, but are too young to be vaccinated. People who care for them should be vaccinated.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine information

• Pregnant women should receive a vaccine booster during the third trimester of each pregnancy, even if they received it before.

• Infants should be vaccinated as soon as possible. The first dose is recommended at 2 months of age. Young children need five doses of pertussis vaccine by kindergarten (ages 4-6).

• California requires seventh-grade students to get a vaccine booster shot.

• Adults need vaccine booster shots, especially if they are in contact with infants or are health-care workers or have contact with pregnant women.

Source: California Department of Public Health

The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6310, or @beehealthwriter on Twitter.

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