Sunday, Jun 24, 2018
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3 Lucas County adults die of likely flu complications, health department says

Three Lucas County adults have died of suspected influenza-related complications, the health department announced Friday, prompting a public health advisory for the county and bringing the county’s total flu deaths this year to four.

The deceased are a 58-year-old woman, an 86-year-old man, and a 90-year-old man; all had underlying medical conditions, according to the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department.

Nathaniel Lee Downey, 18 months, died Monday, health officials said. He was the first child in Lucas County to die of flu-complications since at least 2005. Family said the Toledo boy fell ill Jan. 5 and later died at Mercy Health St. Vincent Medical Center. 

The last Lucas County adult deaths occurred in the 2014-15 season when a man in his 50s and an 89-year-old man died. Both had other health complications, health department spokesman Alice Dargartz said Friday. 

Certain populations, including young children, the elderly, and those with existing medical conditions and compromised immune systems, are more susceptible to serious complications with the flu. 

Overall hospitalizations across Ohio continue to climb. In Lucas County, 212 people have been hospitalized this season — 6 percent are patients 2 years old and younger.

“Everyone older than 6 months of age should be vaccinated against the flu every year,” Health Commissioner Eric Zgodzinski said in a statement Friday. “If you have not yet been vaccinated this year, it's not too late. When you get vaccinated, you are not just protecting yourself. You are also protecting the people you love.”

For more information about influenza vaccination and prevention, visit lucascountyhealth.com or contact the department at 419-213-4100.

Contact Lauren Lindstrom at: llindstrom@theblade.com, 419-724-6154, or on Twitter @lelindstrom.

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