OMAHA — Sarpy/Cass Department of Health officials on Friday reported the jurisdiction’s first flu-related death this season.
The person who died was a Cass County man in his 65 years of age.
“This is a sad reminder that the flu can cause serious illness,” Sarpy/Cass health director Sarah Schram said in a statement.
Influenza cases are increasing rapidly in Nebraska, with influenza-like illness ranked in the “very high” category within the state. Douglas County reported its first flu-related death of the season in late November.
Health officials recommend that everyone 6 months and older gets a flu shot each season, especially those who are at high risk of serious complications from the flu. The flu vaccine available this season is considered well suited to circulating virus strains.
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The most common symptoms of influenza are fever, cough, and sore throat, but they can also include body aches, headaches, chills, and a runny nose. Symptoms generally last from a few days to a week or more.
In addition to influenza, several respiratory viruses such as respiratory syncytial virus or RSV and the virus that causes COVID-19 are also spreading in the United States and Nebraska. Testing is important to determine the appropriate treatment for these viruses.
Health officials are urging residents to take daily preventative measures to prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses like the flu, including washing hands frequently, covering coughs and sneezes, and staying home when sick.
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