Grayson County reports first flu death of the year

By: Allison Harris
By: Allison Harris

GRAYSON COUNTY, TX -- Texas is experiencing one of the worst flu seasons in the nation, and on Thursday night Grayson County reported its first flu death this year.

Amanda Ortez with the Grayson County Health Department confirms a Whitesboro man has died of Type A Flu. He was admitted to Texas Health Presbyterian-WNJ with respiratory problems and multiple underlying flu symptoms. He died January 6th at age 73. Officials don't know if he had been vaccinated with the flu.

"The state, as well as the CDC, is reporting that there's widespread flu activity in the state of Texas, and of course that includes Grayson County," Ortez said.

In addition to the first flu death, the Grayson County Health Department is reporting 97 cases of flu-like illness this season most of with are Type A flu. That's minimal compared to the 26 flu-related deaths reported in Dallas County alone.

Dr. Greg Hansen says Texoma Medical Center is averaging 20 to 30 patients with flu-like symptoms in their ER daily, which he says is typical this time of year.

"Well, as far as flu seasons go, it's probably about average. We do see a peak in January, and then it starts ending in February. We add staffing during these peak times," Hansen said.

Hansen says symptoms for this year's flu strain are different.

"Fever, body aches, dry cough, headache and this year's strain has a little bit of nausea, even some vomiting with it."

Ortez says it's not too late to get your flu shot and protect yourself.

"We've seen more people coming in for their flu shots, and that's great because they're being proactive. They're taking their stance, and they're going to fight the flu, and the primary way to fight the flu is to get your vaccine."

Ortez says they just received another shipment of 600 vaccines at the health department.


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