Influenza claims life of Fremont Co child
The Wyoming Department of Health released information that there has been a flu-related death of a Fremont County child.
Dr. Alexia Harrist, state health officer and state epidemiologist with WDH, said, “We continue to see widespread influenza across the state with indications of high activity levels. We do not know if we have yet reached this season’s peak or for how much longer flu will spread in the state.”
“Unfortunately, the death of a Fremont County child has been reported to us this week. We know we have had likely at least 10 other deaths among adults in Wyoming this flu season,” Harrist said. An official count of flu-related deaths will not be available until after the season ends.
Harrist said what is happening with flu in Wyoming is consistent with other areas of the country. “While H3N2, an ‘A’ virus, has been dominant so far this season, we are now seeing a shift in Wyoming to some ‘B’ viruses,” she said. “Historically, seasons with high levels of H3N2 have been associated with more severe influenza illnesses with higher numbers of hospitalizations and deaths.”
Doctors may recommend prescription antiviral medications to help treat influenza. These medications may be especially helpful for persons at higher risk for flu complications such as young children, older adults, persons with chronic medical conditions, persons with challenged immune systems, pregnant women, persons less than 19 years of age who are on long-term aspirin therapy for other conditions, those who are extremely overweight, and residents of nursing homes or other chronic-care facilities.
“For antiviral medications to be a good option, it is important to seek medical care quickly once you become ill,” Harrist said.