Flu cases are on the rise again in San Diego with seven more fatalities reported last week, the County Health and Human Services Agency announced Wednesday.
Officials said this is a sign that flu activity is not finished for the season, despite numbers declining for the past few weeks.
“Hopefully the increase in new cases this week was an abnormality in the decreases we’ve been seeing in the past couple of weeks,” said Dr. Wilma Wooten, county public health officer, in a statement. “But it’s a good reminder for people that flu season is not over and can last for a few more weeks, so people should continue taking preventive measures and get vaccinated.”
There were a total of 708 flu cases reported last week. In comparison, there were 542 cases the previous week.
Thirty-five of the total flu deaths reported so far involved people under 65 years old, according to county officials. These are the only cases public health agencies must report in California. However, the county notifies the public of all flu deaths regardless of age.
In San Diego County, the high numbers are partly due to the region's broad surveillance and special reporting systems that provide fast and detailed results confirming cases.
As of March 7, there has been 289 influenza deaths and 18,135 cases of flu for the whole season, according to the county.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reminded everyone that it's not too late for a flu shot. Everyone six months and older can get vaccinated. Officials said it takes two weeks to develop immunity.