The Grapevine

Flu Season 2019 Death: First Fatal Case Reported In New Mexico

Well, it’s officially flu season. And unfortunately, along with it comes the first official death for this year. That’s according to officials from the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH), who recently confirmed that a 90-year-old patient hailing from Bernalillo County has succumbed to the disease and passed away.

Following this, there are now five confirmed cases of flu infection in New Mexico, as per NMDOH. All of the five cases are adults, with one living in Santa Fe County, three residing in Sandoval County and the 90-year-old from Bernalilo County, as mentioned.

Following this, the Department of Health issued a swift reminder for everyone to get vaccinated against influenza as soon as possible. This includes everyone from babies six months of age to the elderly people since they are the ones who are at high risk of contracting flu-related complications.

As such, children younger than five, pregnant women (all trimesters), people aged 65 and older, people of any age who have underlying medical conditions (diabetes, asthma, lung or heart disease), people who live in nursing homes and people who care for those at high risk for complications for flu should get flu vaccine, which is easily offered in many locations. This includes pharmacies, hospitals, healthcare provider offices and NMDOH public health offices, as well as select schools and worksites.

As a reminder, the flu’s general symptoms include coughing, sore throat, fever/chills, muscle or body aches, runny or stuffy nose, fatigue, headaches, and for some people, vomiting and/or diarrhea.

“Flu can be fatal if left untreated or if a person – at any age – has a weakened immune system. Getting your flu vaccination every year is the single best way to protect you, your family, and our state’s most vulnerable residents, from infants to the elderly,” NMDOH Cabinet Secretary Kathy Kunkel said. 

Flu Controversy

Earlier this year, a study has revealed why the flu vaccine is very ineffective, stating that while there are countless strains of influenza that can affect people, only four strains can be cured by the vaccine. The study also warned against pregnant women using the vaccine.

Vaccine A nurse holds up a one dose bottle and a prepared syringe of measles, mumps and rubella virus vaccine made by Merck at the Utah County Health Department on April 29, 2019 in Provo, Utah. George Frey/Getty Images