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CDC: First pediatric flu death reported this season

November 6, 2023

The first pediatric flu death of the season has been reported, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report.

The child’s death was associated with influenza A virus and occurred in early October. Last season, at least 181 children died of flu.

Nationally, outpatient respiratory illness is below baseline, but activity is high in Alaska and Puerto Rico. Hospital admissions for flu are low nationally but rising. The CDC expects respiratory virus hospitalizations this fall and winter will be similar to last season when hospitals were overwhelmed with the combination of flu, COVID-19 and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

The AAP and CDC recommend everyone 6 months and older get vaccinated against flu and COVID-19. The vaccines can be given at the same time. Young children and older adults also are eligible for RSV immunizations.

About 25% of children had been vaccinated against flu as of Oct. 21, a similar rate as the same time last season, according to the CDC. About 30% of Hispanic children have been vaccinated, compared to 22% of White children and 21% of Black children. Coverage is higher for children living in urban areas compared to rural areas.



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