Public health officials have confirmed the fourth flu-related pediatric death in Massachusetts on Tuesday.
According to the Department of Public Health, a teenage boy from Middlesex County has died from the virus this flu season. In January and February, an adolescent male from Worcester County and two young girls from Middlesex County also died from the flu virus.
“This latest pediatric flu-related death underscores the seriousness of influenza and the need for everyone over the age of six months to get vaccinated,” Dr. Larry Madoff, Medical Director of the Bureau of Infectious Disease and Laboratory Sciences at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health stated in a news release. “Data suggests that we may be past the peak of the flu season, however, it is not over yet.”
One flu-related death was reported in Massachusetts last season.
An estimate between 250 and 1,100 Massachusetts residents die annually from complications of the flu, according to DPH officials.
DPH said reports of both flu-like illness and flu-related hospitalizations have dropped since their peak in February. Health officials continue to encourage residents to stay vigilant about washing their hands and getting vaccinated to prevent the spread of the disease.
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