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First flu-related death reported in Kern County for 2016-2017 flu season

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Posted at 12:25 PM, Jan 31, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-31 15:56:26-05

Kern County Public Health Services Department has received confirmation of the first flu-related death in Kern County for the 2016-2017 flu season.

“Again we are reminded of how dangerous the flu can be” says Matt Constantine, Director of Kern County Public Health Services. “We offer our deepest sympathies to the individual’s family and friends”.

The Kern County Public Health Services Department encourages residents to get their flu vaccine annually. An annual flu vaccine is the first and best way to protect against the flu.

“We encourage our residents to protect themselves and their loved ones, especially with the peak of flu season upon us,” says Constantine.

The flu can be a serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death. Anyone can get sick from the flu and certain people are at greater risk for serious complications from the flu.

These high-risk people include:

  • Young children
  • Pregnant women
  • Adults 65 years and older
  • Anyone with chronic health conditions such as asthma or diabetes

In addition to getting an annual flu vaccination, residents should also do the following to stop the spread of flu and other respiratory illnesses:

  • Stay home when sick
  • Cover a cough or sneeze with a tissue and properly dispose of the used tissue
  • Wash hands thoroughly with soap and warm water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth