Four more Oklahomans die from flu; total now at 30

Thirty Oklahomans now have died from flu this season, the most since the 2009-10 flu season, when the H1N1 pandemic caused 48 deaths in the state.
BY JACLYN COSGROVE jcosgrove@opubco.com Modified: February 28, 2013 at 6:44 pm •  Published: March 1, 2013
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Four more Oklahomans have died from the flu, bringing the total number of state residents who have died since September to 30, the state Health Department reported Thursday.

This is the most Oklahomans to die from the flu since the 2009-10 flu season, when the H1N1 pandemic caused 48 deaths in the state.

The four people reported to have died all were 65 or older. The deaths included residents from Comanche, Tulsa and Oklahoma counties.

Of the 30 residents who have died this flu season, 24 were 65 or older. Almost half of the people in Oklahoma hospitalized with the flu this year were 65 or older.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported last week that this year's flu vaccine was found to be largely ineffective among people 65 and older.

For people 65 and older, the flu shot was only 9 percent effective in preventing the H3N2 strain of the flu, according to the CDC. This strain of the flu has been most prevalent among people 65 and older in Oklahoma, according to the state Health Department.

Since September, 987 flu-related hospitalizations have been reported in Oklahoma, according to the state Health Department.


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