North Carolina reports first child to die of the flu this flu season

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Influenza virus (United States Center for Disease Control)

RALEIGH, N.C. — A North Carolina child has died of the flu, marking the state’s first child flu death of the season, according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

Health officials did not release the child’s name but said the child was from the western part of the state and died in December.

“We extend our deepest sympathies to this child’s family,” said State Epidemiologist Dr. Zack Moore. “These personal losses are also a reminder for all of us that flu can be a serious illness. We want to encourage people to protect themselves and others by getting their annual flu shot.”

The flu season began on Sept. 29, and already 21 people have died of the flu in North Carolina. 14 of those people were over the age of 65.

Nine died between Dec. 29 and Jan. 4 alone.

As of Jan. 4, 27 children died of the flu across the United States this flu season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The flu season will end on May 16.

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