SACRAMENTO – Dr. Ron Chapman, director of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and state health officer, announced today the number of confirmed influenza related deaths in the state has increased by 52 to a total of 147 confirmed deaths for the season.
Four of the 147 are pediatric deaths. There are an additional 44 deaths under investigation, not yet confirmed.
The 147 confirmed influenza-associated deaths this season have been reported by the following jurisdictions: Alameda (4), Contra Costa (5), El Dorado (1), Fresno (6), Glenn (1), Humboldt (1), Imperial (1), Kern (6), Kings (3), Lassen (1), Long Beach City (3), Los Angeles (17), Madera (2), Marin (2), Mendocino (1), Merced (3), Monterey (2), Nevada (1), Orange (5), Riverside (5), Sacramento (15), San Bernardino (13), San Diego (7), San Francisco (2), San Joaquin (4), San Mateo (4), Santa Barbara (1), Santa Clara (8), Santa Cruz (1), Shasta (1), Siskiyou (3), Solano (1), Sonoma (4), Stanislaus (11), Tulare (1), and Ventura (1).
The total number of deaths reported for the entire 2012-2013 influenza season was 106.
Those at highest risk – the elderly, pregnant women, infants, or those with other health conditions – who show flu symptoms should contact their physician immediately in order to get the most effective treatment. Symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and fatigue.
“This influenza season continues to be a severe one as the increasing number of influenza-related deaths indicates,” said Dr. Chapman. “Once again I urge all Californians to get vaccinated, because it is the best defense against influenza.”
Influenza vaccine remains available and there is no widespread shortage of anti-virals for treatment. CDPH continues to closely monitor influenza activity statewide and related resources.
Visit a flu vaccine location near you to get immunized. Some local health departments may also offer free or low-cost immunizations. More information on influenza and other respiratory disease surveillance reports can be found on the CDPH website.