Flu season hits, five H1N1 virus deaths reported statewide
One death reported Friday in Santa Clara County
By Sarah Rohrs/Times-Herald staff writer
With the holidays over, Californians can gear up for another kind of season altogether.
Health officials say the flu season will intensify in the new year, with various viruses posing particular risk to young children and the elderly.
Even the notorious H1N1 virus, which caused numerous deaths in the worldwide pandemic in 2009, is showing up and with the potential of making people very ill, Solano County Public Health Division of Health and Social Services Health Officer Dr. Bela T. Matyas said.
One flu-related death in the Bay Area has already been reported in Santa Clara County. A 41-year-old woman died after contracting the H1N1 virus, that county announced Friday.
Four other deaths due to people contracting flu strains have occurred statewide since Oct. 1 of last year, including one in Contra Costa County, and one in Alameda County, according to state Department of Public Health spokesman Corey Egel.
Matyas said there have been no flu-related deaths this season in Solano County.
However, he said he is aware of one Solano County man, living in the upper county, who was in the hospital in the critical care unit after contracting the H1N1 virus, also know as the swine flu virus.