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Flu deaths in Oklahoma hold steady for week, officials say

The state Health Department releases a weekly report of the number of Oklahoma residents who died or were hospitalized because of the flu.
FROM STAFF REPORTS Published: March 8, 2013
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Oklahoma's flu season appears to be slowing down, as no flu-related deaths were reported this week.

Kendra Dougherty, an epidemiologist at the state Health Department, said even though the state has seen a decrease in flu activity, it's important to use precautions, because the flu season in Oklahoma continues until April.

“You can still get flu right now, so washing your hands, covering your cough, staying at home while you're sick and trying to avoid being around sick people are all protective measures you can take to protect yourself and your loved ones,” Dougherty said.

Since the start of flu season in September, 1,015 flu-related hospitalizations have been reported to the state Health Department.

Texas County, located in the middle of the Oklahoma Panhandle, has had the highest number of flu-related hospitalizations per capita, with about 73 hospitalizations per 100,000 people.

Oklahoma County has had 161 flu-related hospitalizations since September, or 22 hospitalizations per 100,000 people.

Tulsa County has had a higher number, with 287 flu-related hospitalizations reported. That factors to about 48 cases per 100,000 people.

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