11 new flu deaths reported, dozens hospitalized

Now, the Oklahoma State Department of Health says 48 deaths related to the flu have been recorded.

"The flu virus can be extremely risky to people who have compromised immune systems, cancer, kidney disease and other chronic conditions", said Dr. David Priest, medical director for infection prevention at Novant Health. No pediatric deaths have been reported this season.

Sixteen more people died from complications of the flu in North Carolina last week, making it the deadliest week this flu season as the prevalence of the viral illness continues to increase.

"We have seen the same trend here in Ross County, with a total of 31 influenza-associated hospitalizations, 14 of those cases in just the past week", said Michelle Long, infectious disease nurse with the Ross County Health District.

As of Wednesday, there have been 125 hospitalizations due to flu.

22 additional charges for Endymion crash suspect
'The driver of a truck, identified as 25-year-old Neilson Rizzuto , travelled near the Endymion parade at around 6:42 p.m. At least three people were hospitalized overnight Saturday with moderate to serious injuries, authorities said.

Flu-like symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue.

The county says while children under six months old can not get a flu shot, there are other ways to protect them.

Flu can be a serious illness for the elderly, children younger than 5, pregnant women, and people with certain medical conditions, such as asthma, diabetes or heart disease. The flu vaccine can be administered to anyone 6 months of age or older. Oklahoma remains in a "widespread" flu activity category.

The Forsyth health department at 799 Highland Ave.is offering free flu shots, Hunter said.

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