Kings County case raises Valley H1N1 flu deaths to five

Sunday, January 12, 2014
By Paul Martin

The Fresno Bee
January 10, 2014

A fifth person in the central San Joaquin Valley has died of influenza in the past week, adding to a growing number of flu-associated deaths in the state.

The death was the second for Kings County, which reported its first death on Thursday. The same day, Fresno County reported a death and Merced reported two.

Health officials said how much the flu spreads in coming weeks will depend on how many people get vaccinated. Flu season in California typically peaks in January and February.

But influenza is now “widespread” in California, state officials said.

Dr. Gil Chavez, the state epidemiologist and deputy director for infectious disease, said the number of confirmed flu cases “is rising rapidly and exceeds what is expected for this time of year.”

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