California Department of Public Health Director Ron Chapman announced on Friday that 16 influenza-related deaths in persons under 65-years-old have been confirmed, increasing the total of such deaths to 318 for the 2013-2014 season.
Chapman said six of the 318 flu deaths are pediatric deaths and 26 additional deaths are under investigation.
CDPH said that by this time last year, the agency had received a report of 43 influenza-related deaths in people younger than 65 years of age. For the 2012-2013 season, the agency reported a total of 106 deaths.
Chapman said the majority of influenza-related deaths in persons younger than 65 years of age occurred in people with underlying medical conditions. Outpatient visits and hospitalizations have continued to decrease, and visits to healthcare providers are within expected levels. Flu activity status has decreased from regional to local.
People with the highest risk include the elderly, pregnant women, infants and people with other health conditions. Chapman said these people should see their health care provider as soon as they experience symptoms to receive the most effective treatment.
Symptoms of the flu include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and fatigue.
CDPH said it will continue to closely monitor influenza activity in the state.