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ND suffers through ‘severe year for flu deaths’ with 48

FARGO -- North Dakota has seen 48 flu-related deaths as the peak influenza season enters its final weeks. The 48 known deaths are much higher than identified flu deaths in recent years, which have ranged from five to 10, according to figures from...

FARGO - North Dakota has seen 48 flu-related deaths as the peak influenza season enters its final weeks.
The 48 known deaths are much higher than identified flu deaths in recent years, which have ranged from five to 10, according to figures from the North Dakota Department of Health.
“I would say it’s a severe year for flu deaths,” Jill Baber, the department’s influenza surveillance coordinator, said Friday. “It’s the high side of normal.”
The spike in deaths this year is not alarming when examined with pneumonia deaths, which last year together totaled 483 deaths, she said.
“These are people who probably have diabetes, heart failure, chronic illness,” Baber said.
Influenza is a significant cause of pneumonia, especially among the frail elderly, and the two consistently track together, Baber said.
Reported flu cases cluster among children younger than 10 and among those older than 60, though all age groups are affected.
Flu-related hospitalizations in North Dakota thus far total 206.
Generally, North Dakota’s peak flu season ends around the end of March.

Related Topics: HEALTH
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