Three more people died last week from complications of the flu, raising the number of fatalities to five for this flu season, San Diego County health officials reported Wednesday.
There were four flu-related deaths as of the same date last season.
A 77-year-old woman died on Dec. 1 from influenza B, officials with the County Health and Human Services Agency reported on Wednesday.
A 49-year-old man died from complications of H1N1 (influenza A) on Dec. 4, according to the agency.
Also, officials received a delayed report regarding an 80-year-old woman who died on Oct. 15 from influenza B.
Officials said all had underlying medical conditions and had not received a flu shot before the season began.
For the week ending Dec. 8, three percent of all visits to local emergency rooms were for influenza-like illnesses, the agency said.
Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County public health officer advises residents to get vaccinated to protect themselves from the flu.
“Influenza deaths are very unfortunate but serve as a reminder that the flu can be deadly, especially for at-risk populations,” she said.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone 6 months and older get a flu shot every year. The vaccine is safe and effective. It takes two weeks for immunity to develop.
In San Diego County, 342 residents died of flu-related causes in the 2017 to 2018 flu season.