LINCOLN–(KFOR Jan. 19)–The first flu-related deaths this season in Nebraska have been reported, including four people over the age of 50.
According to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, one died from Influenza B and three with Influenza A, one of which also had the virus that causes COVID-19. These cases were reported in the Two Rivers Health Department that covers Buffalo, Dawson, Franklin, Gosper, Harlan, Kearney and Phelps counties, along with the Sarpy/Cass Health Department and the Douglas County Health Department.
Flu activity is currently elevated in the State. DHHS says getting the annual flu vaccine is the best protection against the flu.
“The flu can be a life-threatening disease for some, and can get anyone sick,” said Dr. Matthew Donahue, State Epidemiologist. “Influenza is now spreading throughout the State in addition to COVID-19. If you get sick, stay home. The most effective prevention measure for the flu is the flu vaccine.”
In addition to getting vaccinated, prevention measures can also protect against the flu:
Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue every time you cough or sneeze. Throw the used tissue in a wastebasket.
Practice non-pharmaceutical interventions If you don’t have a tissue, sneeze or cough into your sleeve.
After coughing or sneezing, always clean your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand cleaner.
Stay home when you are sick.
Do not share eating utensils, drinking glasses, towels, or other personal items.
Clean your hands often with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand cleaner.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
Avoid close contact with people who are sick, if possible.