County reports first flu-related death

County reports first flu-related deathIn light of the first confirmed flu-related death in Kern County for the current flu season, the county’s Public Health Services Department officials urge residents to get their flu vaccine as the best defense against the illness.

“We encourage our residents to protect themselves and their loved ones,” said KCPHS Director Matt Constantine.

“The flu can be a serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death,” said a spokesperson. “Anyone can get sick from the flu and certain people are at greater risk for serious complications from the flu.”

These high-risk people include young children, pregnant women, adults 65 years and older and anyone with chronic health conditions such as asthma or diabetes.

In addition to getting annual flu vaccinations, residents should also do the following to stop the spread of flu and other respiratory illnesses:

• Stay home when sick

• Cover a cough or sneeze with a tissue and properly dispose of the used tissue

• Wash hands thoroughly with soap and warm water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth

Flu shots are available for $9 each through the Mobile Health Clinic.

The next visit to Ridgecrest will be Thursday, Jan. 9, at 11 a.m. at the Ridgecrest Public Library.

Story First Published: 2020-01-03