First Pediatric Flu Death in DuPage County

Child's hand in hospital bed.
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The DuPage County Health Department (DCHD) has reported the death of an adolescent after complications with influenza (flu) during the week of Dec. 24, 2022. This was the first flu-associated pediatric death this season in DuPage County, and the first since the 2018/2019 season. It was the third flu-associated death of the season in Illinois, and the 61st in the United States.

Since October 2022, we have seen early, and rapidly increasing flu activity locally compared to past seasons,” said the DCHD in a news release. “Although seasonal flu activity continues to decline in most areas, spread and hospitalizations related to respiratory illnesses (including influenza) remain moderate to high, locally and nationally.”

For privacy and confidentiality, additional details of this death were not made public by the DCHD.

“We are deeply saddened to hear of this tragic death from influenza. Our heartfelt condolences go out to the child’s family,” said Karen Ayala, Executive Director of the DuPage County Health Department. “Because flu activity is expected to remain elevated for several months, now is still a good time for children and adults to get an annual flu vaccine if not already vaccinated, and to take steps to protect those who may be at higher risk, including staying away from others when we are ill. It is not too late to get your annual flu vaccine, to help prevent serious illness, hospitalization, and death related to flu.”

Naperville News 17’s Will Payne reports.

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