Ana Martinez, a medical assistant at the Sea Mar Community Health Center, gives a patient a flu shot in 2018 in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, file)

Ana Martinez, a medical assistant at the Sea Mar Community Health Center, gives a patient a flu shot in 2018 in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, file)

Snohomish County has third flu death; new cases decline

Predominant B strain is decreasing. It is uncertain what a second round of influenza will bring.

EVERETT — Flu deaths continue to hit home, but the number of new influenza cases is decreasing.

A Lynnwood man in his early 60s died Thursday, the third Snohomish County death in the 2019-20 flu season.

The man had underlying medical conditions, as did the other two people who died, according to the Snohomish Health District.

In Washington, 36 people, including three children, have died this season from the flu. Nationwide, there have been 6,600 deaths, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with about 13 million flu illnesses and 120,000 hospitalizations reported.

The first round is winding down in what officials say is an unusual flu season. New cases peaked in December, with influenza B as the predominant strain. There are two main strains, A and B. Typically, influenza A strikes first.

There were 287 confirmed cases of the flu in the county during a one-week period ending Jan. 11, the latest figures available. Of those, 217 were the B strain. The week ending Jan. 4 had 259 cases of the B virus, out of 339 total.

“We’ve seen a slight decrease, but influenza B is still circulating,” said Heather Thomas, a Snohomish Health District spokeswoman. “We’re also waiting to see if influenza A cases pick up.”

Washington is among 32 states with high flu levels in the CDC’s weekly report.

So far, there have been 52 hospitalizations and 12 schools reporting greater than 10% absenteeism due to influenza-like illness in the county. Two long-term care facilities reported an outbreak.

The first two deaths were a woman in her early 30s from a rural northern part of the county on Jan. 1 and a Lake Stevens man in his late 80s on Jan. 5.

During the 2018-19 flu season, there were 26 confirmed flu-related deaths in the county, while 362 people were hospitalized.

“It’s not too late to get that flu shot,” said Thomas, the health district spokeswoman.

Been sick with the flu?

Don’t forget to clean and disinfect to prevent the spread.

“The flu virus can hang around on hard surfaces for up to 24 hours,” she said. “Think of all the common items in your home: doorknobs, remote controls, cell phones and other electronics.”

People who are at higher risks for flu complications, such as pregnant women, infants, or seniors, should contact their health care provider with early signs of illness.

Andrea Brown: abrown@heraldnet.com; 425-339-3443. Twitter @reporterbrown.

Talk to us

More in Local News

The Monroe Correctional Complex on Thursday, April 9, 2020. Inmates held a demonstration on Wednesday night after six inmates tested positive for COVID-19. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Another outbreak sends 60 to isolation at Monroe prison unit

One worker and one prisoner tested positive Monday. Then more cases were found throughout the Twin Rivers Unit.

A fatal crash prompted closure of West Mukilteo Boulevard between Forest Park and Dogwood Drive Friday afternoon. (Everett Police Department) 20211126
2 dead, 1 injured in T-bone crash in Everett

The two people who died are believed to be in their 80s. Police don’t suspect alcohol, drugs or speed played a role.

Resident escapes burning trailer near Gold Bar

Nobody was injured in the fire Saturday, but the home was destroyed.

1 dead, 3 injured in 5-car crash east of Stanwood

Katrina Kakalecik, 27, of Granite Falls, was a passenger in an SUV that was rear-ended on Thanksgiving.

A woman walks a dog in downtown Snohomish on Oct. 22. (Sue Misao / The Herald)
Snohomish adopts sales tax for mental health, affordable housing

The city’s new 0.1% tax is also under consideration elsewhere in Snohomish County.

Kyle Wheeler listens as he is convicted of second-degree manslaughter in Snpohomish County Superior Court on Thursday August 12, 2021 in Everett, Wash. ( Ellen Dennis /The Herald)
When killer skipped prison date, family’s mourning turned to fear

A judge sentenced Kyle Wheeler for killing an Everett man, Charles Hatem, then freed him on a promise to report to prison.

Michael Ciaravino
Ex-Mill Creek manager gets $92K severance after rocky tenure

Deputy City Manager Martin Yamamoto has temporarily taken over after Michael Ciaravino’s resignation.

Shawneri Guzman, center, who was named Washington's Fire Educator of the Year and her team of Community Resource firefighter paramedics Janette Anderson, left, and Captain Nicole Picknell, right, at the Lynnwood Fire Station on Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2021 in Lynnwood, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
A pandemic playbook, used nationally, was made in Snohomish County

South County Fire helped transport “patient zero.” Their COVID manual has helped departments far and wide.

Charges: Everett ID thief tried to buy wheels, speakers, more

The man, 33, was charged this week with 10 counts of identity theft in Snohomish County Superior Court.

Most Read