Health & Fitness

First confirmed flu cases reported in Kansas

It’s not too late to get a flu shot, the Kansas state health officer said Thursday. This is a dose of last season’s vaccine.
It’s not too late to get a flu shot, the Kansas state health officer said Thursday. This is a dose of last season’s vaccine. File photo

Kansas health officials said Thursday that the state’s first four confirmed flu cases of the season have been reported by a hospital in the state’s south central region.

Nationwide, this so far has been a relatively mild flu season. Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said reports of flulike illnesses had been “minimal” in most states, including Kansas and Missouri.

This season’s influenza vaccine appears to be a good match to the circulating influenza viruses, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment said.

“The arrival of our first influenza cases of the season serve as an important reminder that it is not too late to get your flu vaccine,” said Susan Mosier, department secretary and state health officer.

During the peak of the 2014-2015 influenza season in Kansas, about 3 percent of all health care visits to clinics that track cases were due to flulike illnesses.

Flu or pneumonia contributed to or was the direct cause of 1,153 deaths among Kansas residents during the 2014-2015 influenza season. Influenza and pneumonia was the eighth leading cause of death in 2014 in Kansas.

Alan Bavley: 816-234-4858, @AlanBavley

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