First flu-related death in eastern Washington confirmed in Spoka - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

First flu-related death in eastern Washington confirmed in Spokane County

Posted: Updated:
SPOKANE, Wash. -

The Spokane Regional Health District confirmed the first flu-related death this season in eastern Washington on Thursday. 

The SRHD said the man was in his 60s. 

"Unfortunately, this is an example of how serious flu can be," said Dr. Bob Lutz, Spokane Regional Health District’s health officer. “Your best chance at protecting yourself and loved ones is to get a flu shot soon.”

Some people, such as those over the age of 65, young children, pregnant women, American Indian/Alaska Natives and those with certain health conditions, are at higher risk for serious flu complications.

One other flu-related death occurred in Washington state this season, in Pierce County, as reported by Washington State Department of Health. Twenty-four Spokane County residents have been hospitalized with flu this season, compared to nine admissions during the same period last year. Flu season in Spokane County typically peaks in February.

The SRHD provided the following information on the flu: 

People who have the flu often feel some or all of these symptoms:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headaches
  • Extreme fatigue (very tired)

Flu vaccines are designed to protect against the most common flu viruses. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends everyone 6 months of age and older get immunized against flu. The vaccine promotes antibody protection within two weeks.

Flu shots are available at numerous locations throughout Spokane County, including health care provider offices, local pharmacies and grocery stores.

Flu vaccine choices this year include:

  • Trivalent vaccine The traditional vaccine designed to protect against three different flu viruses—two A viruses and one B virus.
  • Quadrivalent vaccine These flu vaccines protect against four strains of influenza—two strains of influenza A and two strains of influenza B. Including a second strain of influenza B provides broader protection.
  • High-dose vaccines As people age, their immune systems weaken, which means the elderly benefit less than younger people from a standard flu shot. High-dose shots, approved for those ages 65 and over, include four times the usual level of immunity-producing proteins to provide more protection.
  • Intradermal and needle-free shots These shots are designed for needle-phobic adults ages 18 to 64. Intradermal shots have shorter needles that penetrate just skin, rather than traditional intramuscular shots. With a needle-free shot, a jet injector uses a high-pressure, narrow stream of fluid to penetrate the skin instead of a needle. Note that the nasal spray flu vaccine is no longer recommended due to a lack of proven effectiveness for preventing influenza.

Said Dr. Lutz, “For decades, we only had one type of flu vaccine. By giving people choices, we remove some of the barriers that prevent vaccination. Since some vaccines are intended for certain groups, talk to your provider or pharmacist about the vaccine that is best for you.”

Last flu season, 315 people were hospitalized due to flu in Spokane County and, unfortunately, 14 residents’ deaths were attributed to flu-related complications. CDC estimates that flu resulted in 9.2 million to 35.6 million U.S. infections since 2010. Its figures also show that from 2010-2014, annual influenza-associated deaths ranged from a low of 12,000 (during the 2011-2012 season) to a high of 56,000 (during 2012-2013).

For more information about influenza and influenza vaccine visit cdc.gov/flu or srhd.org. Spokane Regional Health District’s web site also offers comprehensive, updated information about Spokane Regional Health District and its triumphs in making Spokane a safer and healthier community. Become a fan of SRHD on Facebook to receive local safety and wellness tips. You can also follow us on Twitter @spokanehealth.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Police impersonator attempts to pull over Spokane woman

    Police impersonator attempts to pull over Spokane woman

    Monday, September 17 2018 8:45 PM EDT2018-09-18 00:45:37 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - "He told me to pull over, and my jaw just dropped," a Spokane woman, who says a fake police officer tried to pull her over, doesn't want to be named. In fear, this could happen again. "It really scared me and kind of threw me off that night. I don't even want to drive by myself anymore," she said. She tells me that she was driving around North Spokane at night on her way home from work. 

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - "He told me to pull over, and my jaw just dropped," a Spokane woman, who says a fake police officer tried to pull her over, doesn't want to be named. In fear, this could happen again. "It really scared me and kind of threw me off that night. I don't even want to drive by myself anymore," she said. She tells me that she was driving around North Spokane at night on her way home from work. 

    >>
  • Report: Olympia woman refuses to pull over for WSP trooper because she drives a Prius

    Report: Olympia woman refuses to pull over for WSP trooper because she drives a Prius

    Monday, September 17 2018 1:45 PM EDT2018-09-17 17:45:44 GMT

    MARYSVILLE, Wash. - An Olympia woman wouldn't pull over for a Washington State Patrol trooper because she drives a Prius, according to an arrest report.

    >>

    MARYSVILLE, Wash. - An Olympia woman wouldn't pull over for a Washington State Patrol trooper because she drives a Prius, according to an arrest report.

    >>
  • Police: Man killed by Cheney officers planned death

    Police: Man killed by Cheney officers planned death

    Tuesday, September 18 2018 1:27 AM EDT2018-09-18 05:27:11 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - Court documents indicate that a man who was killed by Cheney police officers earlier this month had reported himself to police the evening of the shooting. The Spokesman-Review reports 40-year-old Steve Anderson was shot by three officers in a grocery store parking lot after police say he was wielding a knife and moved toward officers. 

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - Court documents indicate that a man who was killed by Cheney police officers earlier this month had reported himself to police the evening of the shooting. The Spokesman-Review reports 40-year-old Steve Anderson was shot by three officers in a grocery store parking lot after police say he was wielding a knife and moved toward officers. 

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • WATCH: Volunteer rescues dog tied to semi-truck pulling out of gas station

    WATCH: Volunteer rescues dog tied to semi-truck pulling out of gas station

    Tuesday, September 18 2018 2:35 PM EDT2018-09-18 18:35:45 GMT

    Talk about being at the right place at the right time. A volunteer with an Arizona Sheriff's Office helps rescue a dog attached to a moving semi-truck. The Yavapai County "volunteer in protection" officer pulling out of a gas station during his break at the same time tractor trailer heads up the interstate with forgotten cargo.  The patrol notices the dog running as the pet's leash remains attached to the rig.  

    >>

    Talk about being at the right place at the right time. A volunteer with an Arizona Sheriff's Office helps rescue a dog attached to a moving semi-truck. The Yavapai County "volunteer in protection" officer pulling out of a gas station during his break at the same time tractor trailer heads up the interstate with forgotten cargo.  The patrol notices the dog running as the pet's leash remains attached to the rig.  

    >>
  • Cop, firefighter among 24 charged in child luring sting in New Jersey

    Cop, firefighter among 24 charged in child luring sting in New Jersey

    Tuesday, September 18 2018 1:42 PM EDT2018-09-18 17:42:14 GMT

    New Jersey authorities say a police officer and a firefighter were among 24 men who tried to lure teenagers for sexual activity.    Attorney General Gurbir Grewal says the men charged in the statewide sting used social media and chat apps to communicate with people they thought were teenage boys and girls. But they were actually talking with undercover officers.   

    >>

    New Jersey authorities say a police officer and a firefighter were among 24 men who tried to lure teenagers for sexual activity.    Attorney General Gurbir Grewal says the men charged in the statewide sting used social media and chat apps to communicate with people they thought were teenage boys and girls. But they were actually talking with undercover officers.   

    >>
  • Middle schoolers hospitalized after being exposed to drugs on the playground in California

    Middle schoolers hospitalized after being exposed to drugs on the playground in California

    Tuesday, September 18 2018 1:34 PM EDT2018-09-18 17:34:18 GMT

    Police say a 13-year-old boy brought two balloons filled with cocaine to his school in Terra Bella, California.  Two students found the balloons and immediately notified teachers once seeing they contained a white powdery substance. Police responded to the scene determining the balloons were filled with cocaine.  A total of 13 kids were evaluated for exposure to the drug.  

    >>

    Police say a 13-year-old boy brought two balloons filled with cocaine to his school in Terra Bella, California.  Two students found the balloons and immediately notified teachers once seeing they contained a white powdery substance. Police responded to the scene determining the balloons were filled with cocaine.  A total of 13 kids were evaluated for exposure to the drug.  

    >>