WUOMFM

MDHHS confirms 2 flu-related deaths of Michigan children

Mar 31, 2017

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has confirmed the influenza-related deaths of two Michigan children.

Officials did not release any other additional information related to the deaths, other than one was a child in northern Michigan and the other child was in western Michigan.

In a statement, the department reiterated the importance of flu vaccinations for anyone older than six months of age.

"Vaccination is especially important for persons at increased risk for complications from flu, including children, adults aged 65 years and older, persons of any age with underlying medical conditions, and pregnant women. Children less than 6 months of age are too young to be vaccinated and need to be protected by vaccination of their close contacts, including parents, siblings, grandparents, child care workers, and healthcare personnel."

These are the first reported flu-related deaths of the 2016-17 season. There was one reported pediatric death in the 2015-16 influenza season.

Last year, only 42% of Michigan residents were vaccinated against the flu, putting the state at 42nd in the country.