(Indianapolis, Ind.) - During one of the most serious flu seasons in years, the illness is claiming more lives in Indiana.
The Indiana State Department of Health reported Thursday that there are now 15 flu-related deaths statewide. The figure is up from 10 deaths recorded as of Wednesday.
Most of the deaths have occurred with the victims being age 65 or older. Two of the most recent victims were living in separate long-term care facilities.
State Respiratory Epidemiologist Shawn Richards says this year's flu season has been of the rare variety.
“As I’ve done influenza surveillance for the State of Indiana for 13 years, this is a very unique situation in that it is an early season,” Richards said. “We are seeing persons with Influenza A and B that are co-infected.”
Doctors are still urging people six months of age or older to receive the flu vaccination, especially those who have underlying health conditions.
The tri-state is certainly having a bout with the flu. Through Thursday, the Northern Kentucky Independent District Health Department reported more than 850 cases in the region. That compares to the 2011-2012 flu season when 284 individuals in northern Kentucky tested positive for the flu.
One death has been reported in Kentucky – that of a Campbell County man who had a variety of underlying medical conditions, the health department said.
Indiana State Department of Health - http://www.in.gov/isdh/22104.htm
Northern Kentucky Independant Health Department - http://www.nkyhealth.org/mx/hm.asp?id=seasonalflu