For Immediate Release: December 31, 2012
Contact: Deanne Thompson, firstname.lastname@example.org, HCA Health Policy & Communication, 714-834-2178
Orange County Reports Season’s First Influenza Death
(Santa Ana) – A 51 year old man from Fountain Valley died last week from influenza B-related disease. This is the first influenza-related death reported for this season in Orange County.
A flu vaccine is the first and most important step in protecting against flu viruses. While we have begun seeing both influenza A and B cases, flu season has not yet peaked in Orange County, and there is still time to get vaccinated. Flu shots are widely available from private physicians, pharmacies and other retail businesses in the community. Information about these locations and dates is available at http://findaflushot.com. Flu shots are also available for eligible individuals through the Health Care Agency’s annual influenza vaccination program. For information about the County’s flu shot program call the HCA Health Referral Line at 1-800-564-8448 or visit www.ochealthinfo.com.
While flu can make anyone sick, certain people are at greater risk for severe illness. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended that all persons 6 months of age and older be given flu shots every year. The highest priority groups include:
- Children under 5, and especially those under 2
- Pregnant women
- People 65 years of age and older
- People who are morbidly obese
- Children and adolescents who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy
- People with chronic diseases like heart disease, asthma, other lung diseases or diabetes
- People with weakened immune systems due to disease or medication
- Health care workers
For more information about seasonal influenza please visit the Health Care Agency’s website www.ochealthinfo.com/flu or the Centers for Disease Control website www.cdc.gov/flu
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