AP NEWS

Idaho health department says 2 women died of influenza

December 23, 2019 GMT

NAMPA, Idaho (AP) — The recent deaths of two women in Idaho are the first flu-related deaths of the season, state officials said.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare did not release the dates of their deaths, but said both women were older than 70, The Idaho Press reports.

Public health officials are responding to influenza outbreaks among residents of assisted-living and long-term care facilities in several communities, the department said in a statement.

Influenza causes respiratory illness in 5% to 20% of the population each year. Symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue.

Idaho officials said 64 people died of flu-related causes from 2014 to 2019, with a majority of those over the age of 70.

The department recommended people over the age of 6 get a flu shot each year to help prevent influenza.