State health officials confirm first pediatric flu death of 2018-2019 season

The Mississippi State Department of Health reports the first confirmed pediatric flu death in the state for the 2018-2019 flu season.

Posted: Dec 5, 2018 12:42 PM
Updated: Dec 5, 2018 3:08 PM

JACKSON, Miss. (WTVA) - The Mississippi State Department of Health reports the first confirmed pediatric flu death in the state for the 2018-2019 flu season.

The deceased was from south Mississippi and had underlying health conditions, the state department stated.

Pediatric deaths are defined as deaths of individuals under the age of 18.

Across the nation, there have been five pediatric flu deaths reported this season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Including this death, there have been a total of 20 pediatric flu deaths reported in Mississippi since pediatric flu deaths became reportable in the 2008-2009 flu season.

“We know that last year there were 183 influenza deaths in children, three of which were in Mississippi,” said MSDH Interim State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs. “Nationally, about 80 percent of the pediatric deaths were in children who were not vaccinated against the flu.”

Mississippi’s first laboratory-confirmed case of flu was reported Tuesday.

RELATED: Flu season hits Mississippi; health officials provide recommendations 

Flu season typically peaks in January through March in Mississippi.

In Mississippi, only pediatric flu deaths are reported to MSDH.

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