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Photo: Dept of Health

El Paso sees First Flu-Related Death of Season

The City of El Paso Department of Public Health has recorded the first flu-related death in our area this season. The case involves a woman in her late 50’s who had underlying medical conditions.

She had tested positive for Influenza A/H1N1, and it is not known if she had received a flu vaccine this year.

“Our heartfelt condolences go out to this woman’s family and friends,” said Robert Resendes, Public Health Director. “We continue to urge residents to do everything they can to prevent getting the flu so that we don’t see more tragedies like this in El Paso.”

The flu vaccine is still considered the first line of defense against the disease. With an almost 60% effectiveness this season, El Pasoans should consider that it is not too late to be vaccinated.

Residents are also asked to practice the “4 C’s” which have proven to be effective in preventing the spread of the flu virus.

CLEAN – Wash your hands often. Scrub your hands for at least 30 seconds with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand cleaner.

COVER – Cover your cough. Use a tissue to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze. Don’t have a tissue? The crook of your elbow will do.

CONTAIN – Contain germs by steering clear of others who are sick. If you do get sick, stay home until you’re well again, so you don’t spread more germs.

CALL – Call or see your doctor if you or your child has a fever of greater than 100 degrees.

As of the end of February a total of 2,857 flu cases have been reported. During “CDC week 8”, the last week in February, more than 1,100 cases were reported, suggesting a late start to the peak of the season. There were a total of 5,379 cases of flu reported at this time during the 2015 flu season.

The efforts and services offered by the Department of Public Health support the City of El Paso’s strategic goal to nurture and promote a healthy, sustainable community. For more information on the programs and services offered by the Department of Public Health, please visitwww.EPHealth.com or dial 2-1-1.

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