El Paso, TX (KTSM) — The New Mexico Department of Health confirms more flu deaths for the 2013-2014 season.
New deaths reported are a 79-year-old man and a 73-year -old man from Bernalillo County and a 45-year-old man from Rio Arriba County.
“Getting a flu vaccine is the best way to protect yourself from the dangers and complications flu can cause,” said Department of Health Cabinet Secretary Retta Ward, MPH.
The predominant circulating flu strain in New Mexico and the United States is influenza H1N1.
This strain was first identified in 2009 and may cause severe illness even in healthy young adults.
The New Mexico Department of Health is urging everyone 6 months of age and older to see their doctor or pharmacist about getting a flu vaccine.
The vaccine is currently available and protects against H1N1 and other strains of flu.
The Department of Health has 29 providers statewide that report influenza-like illnesses (fever with cough or sore throat) from October through May.
Providers that participate in this surveillance network reported that for the week ending January 18, 2014, 5.6% of their patient visits were for influenza-like illness.
The Department offers vaccinations for people without insurance or who are otherwise not able to get immunized.
To find out more about flu vaccination clinics throughout New Mexico, you can call the Immunization Hotline toll free at (866) 681‐5872.
For more information about influenza, visit the Department’s website: http://nmhealth.org/flu/index.shtml