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Flu Deaths In San Diego Reach Last Year’s Total

Seven more influenza deaths were reported last week in San Diego County, bringing this season's local total to 68. That's the same overall number reported all last season, according to an announcement Wednesday by the Health and Human Services Agency.

The people who died ranged in age from 31 to 98 years old, with most over 65. All except three had underlying medical conditions. The number of lab- confirmed influenza cases continued to drop, a sign that influenza activity in the region is waning.

RELATED: Flu-Related Hospitalizations At 10-Year High In California

"Influenza activity is decreasing, but more deaths are likely to be reported," said Dr. Wilma Wooten, county public health officer. "People should continue to get vaccinated as the flu can last through April and later."

Photo credit: County of San Diego, Epidemiology and Immunization Services Branch

For the week ending March 11, 2017, the Health and Human Services Agency Influenza Watch report shows the following:

—Emergency department visits for influenza-like illness remained the same from the previous week at 3 percent.

—Lab-confirmed influenza cases for the week reached 260, compared to 327 the previous week.

—The total influenza deaths to date is 68, compared to 53 at this time last season.

—Total lab-confirmed influenza cases to date is 4,692, compared to 5,081 at this time last season.

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.

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