CT Health Department confirms 2 flu-related deaths are 1st of the season

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The Connecticut Department of Public Health has announced the first two deaths related to flu in the state this season.

The deaths involved a resident of Litchfield County and a resident of Fairfield County, both of whom were over 65 years old, according to the DPH.

Officials say the two deaths occurred the week of Nov. 3. and are the first flu-associated deaths that have been reported to DPH during the 2019-2020 flu season.

So far this year, a total of 47 people were hospitalized in Connecticut because of the flu. Last flu season, nearly 90 people died from the flu, while 3,500 were hospitalized.

Doctors say the influenza virus isn't the only thing to worry about -- it's also the complications that come with it. These include respiratory problems, bronchitis or pneumonia.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal tells News 12 it is important to take proper precautions especially for this flu season.

"Preventing the flu is easy, painless, costless for people who have insurance," Blumenthal said. "These two deaths are only the beginning of a potentially very severe flu season."

Anyone can get the flu, but certain individuals are more prone to it. Senior citizens, children, pregnant women and those with weak immune systems are all at a greater risk.

Specialists say it takes about two weeks for the vaccine to kick in and start protecting from influenza.

Click here for more information about flu shots.

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