As of February 7, 2014, a total of 14 Santa Clara County residents have died from the flu since December. The most recent cases include a 56-year-old female, a 54-year-old female, a 47-year-old female, and a 33-year-old male. Two of these individuals died of H1N1, and two died of Flu A. All four had underlying medical conditions. Two of the individuals died in January, and two in February.
In addition to the deaths, 34 cases of severe flu have been reported to date this flu season. Only flu cases that are in persons less than 65 years of age, and that are severe enough to require hospitalization in an ICU or result in death are reportable to the Public Health Department.
It’s not too late to get a flu vaccination. This year’s vaccine does protect against H1N1. The Public Health Department urges residents to get a flu vaccination, if they haven’t already.
Information about preventing the flu, including H1N1
The following precautions are recommended to prevent the spread of flu virus:
- Cover your cough: Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
- Wash your hands: Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.
- Avoid spreading germs: Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Try to avoid close contact with anyone who is sick. Germs spread this way.
- Stay home if you are sick: If you are sick with flu-like illness, stay home from work or school.