Rita Landgraf, Secretary
Jill Fredel, Director of Communications
302-255-9047, Pager 302-357-7498
Date: January 10, 2012
Delaware's Division of Public Health (DPH) reports the state's first laboratory confirmed case of influenza for Sussex County and the third case for the 2011-2012 influenza season. On Dec. 30, the Delaware Public Health Laboratory confirmed influenza in a 3-year-old boy from Milford.
All three of Delaware's confirmed cases for the 2011-2012 flu season are influenza type A/H3. The state's first case of the flu season was confirmed Nov. 29, with the second case confirmed Dec. 19.
DPH monitors the occurrence of influenza-like illness in hospitals, selected long term care facilities and medical clinics to track flu trends in the state. Reports so far do not suggest that influenza is widely circulating in Delaware.
"It's not too late to get vaccinated," said Dr. Karyl Rattay, DPH director. "This year's influenza vaccine provides protection against this A strain of flu."
DPH urges all Delawareans 6 months of age and older who have not yet been vaccinated against the flu to get a vaccine as soon as possible. The vaccine is readily available through medical providers, pharmacies and some grocery stores.
Flu vaccination reduces the risk of getting infected or spreading the disease to others. It is especially important that the following groups get flu shots:
Delawareans are also encouraged to prevent infection by taking simple everyday measures such as washing hands, using hand sanitizers, covering coughs and sneezes and staying at home when sick. These efforts help stop the spread of respiratory illnesses including flu.
For more information on influenza prevention, diagnosis and treatment call the Division of Public Health at 1-888-295-5156 or 302-744-1033, or visit www.dhss.delaware.gov/dhss/dph/index.html
Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations.