Young child among 6 Albertans who have died of influenza this season

Influenza is now being blamed for six deaths in Alberta this flu season, according to the latest data from the province.

A child between the age of one and four is among those who died.

On Thursday, Alberta Health released its latest flu numbers. So far this flu season, there have been 2,082 lab-confirmed cases of influenza, with almost all of those being attributed to influenza A.

Of those flu cases, 355 have required hospitalization and 34 of those required treatment in intensive care units.

READ MORE: Demand for flu vaccine in Alberta lower compared to previous seasons

As of Thursday afternoon, Alberta Health said 781,868 doses of flu vaccine have been administered in the province, which equates to about 17.6 per cent of Albertans being vaccinated.

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On Wednesday, Alberta’s new chief medical officer of health issued a statement about the rising number of flu, RSV and COVID-19 cases in the province.

READ MORE: 1st statement from Alberta’s new chief medical officer of health on RSV, flu season

Dr. Mark Joffe encouraged Albertans to get their flu shot and also to take other steps to reduce the spread of illness.

“While most children, youth and adults recover from the flu without complications, some can get very sick and need to be treated in hospital,” part of his statement read.

“Transmission levels will fluctuate over time and between communities. We encourage Albertans to judge their risk at any point in time and take appropriate precautions.”

Click to play video: 'Triple threat of illness this winter prompts calls for masking from experts'

Triple threat of illness this winter prompts calls for masking from experts

Last week, Canada’s chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam said the rise in flu, COVID-19 and RSV cases across the country was creating challenges for the health-care system in several parts of the country and suggested there is a need for “stepped-up precautions.”

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She stopped short of calling for mask mandates but recommended people wear them indoors.

READ MORE: Danielle Smith reiterates no mask mandate — says access to meds, ERs priority for dealing with flu, RSV

“I know we’re all tired and we know only too well the long list of good habits that can help keep us and others healthier,” Tam said on Nov. 10.

–With files from The Canadian Press and Emily Mertz, Global News

&© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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