Pinal County sees season’s first pediatric influenza death

Pediatric Flu DeathPinal County recently recorded this season’s first pediatric influenza death in Arizona. This heartbreaking news is a reminder that children younger than 5 who get influenza are among those at increased risk of complications including pneumonia, worsening of chronic conditions, encephalopathy, and sinus and ear infections. 

Quite simply, influenza is an unpredictable virus that can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Flu season usually peaks in Arizona between January and March. However, this year we are seeing an early start to the flu season with cases rising quickly both within Arizona and across the US. In an average year, between 5% and 20% of Arizonans get an influenza viral infection, and many will seek medical care.

Unfortunately, each flu season Arizona has a number of children die from influenza. We had three such tragedies during the 2021-2022 flu season. 

Older individuals and those with weakened immune systems also are at greater risk of severe illness. 

Influenza and COVID-19 vaccination, which is available to those 6 months and older, is the best protection against flu complications. I encourage everyone eligible to find a vaccine provider at vaccines.gov and make sure you have this protection against severe illness. 

Along with RSV and COVID-19, influenza cases have been rising in Arizona. Keeping hands washed, staying home when sick, and maintaining physical distance from people who are sick in your home are among steps we all can take to reduce the spread of each of these viral illnesses. 

Recommend0 recommendationsPublished in My Healthy Arizona

Related Articles

5 Essential Frameworks for Preventing Violent Child Death

The U.S. has a violent child death problem. Developing strategies to prevent violent child deaths death from firearms and traffic crashes is a demanding task that requires consideration of numerous upstream, interrelated, and tangential issues. To help safety advocates develop strategies to prevent violent child death, we compiled five frameworks to help: Understand and explain …
The post 5 Essential Frameworks for Preventing Violent Child Death appeared first on Salud America.

What Are the Risk and Protective Factors for Violent Child Death?

Gun violence and traffic crashes may seem like unpredictable events. But they are not random. They are systematic. Data reveal trends and patterns in gun violence and traffic crashes that can help us identify risk factors and protective factors. This is especially important for addressing violent child deaths. So what does the data show? Join …
The post What Are the Risk and Protective Factors for Violent Child Death? appeared first on Salud America.

Protect Your Family from RSV

With the winter season in full swing, it’s peak time for flu, COVID-19, and RSV.   Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a respiratory virus that usually causes mild, cold-like symptoms.  Most people recover in a week or two. But RSV can be serious, especially for infants and older adults. Latino children also face a “significantly higher burden.”  …
The post Protect Your Family from RSV appeared first on Salud America.

As Social Need Screening Advances, Transportation Remains an Afterthought

Some big changes in 2022 and 2023 have set up the healthcare sector to advance screening for non-medical social needs in 2024 and beyond. This is great news as we work to address social determinants of health (SDoH), improve health outcomes, and reduce health disparities. But one key social need – transportation – isn’t getting …
The post As Social Need Screening Advances, Transportation Remains an Afterthought appeared first on Salud America.