shot needle 300HOPKINS COUNTY, Ky. (1/11/14) ― A Hopkins County woman is the first flu-related death in western Kentucky. The middle aged woman died last week of flu-related symptoms.

While an average of 23,000 deaths occur as a result of seasonal flu and complications annually across the U.S., most of the victims have other illnesses present that affects their abilities to survive severe flu symptoms.

According to a story in SurfKY News' media partner WEHT Channel 25, Hopkins County Coroner Dennis Mayfield said the woman, who died last week, wasn't be treated for other illnesses at the time of her death.

According to the Center For Disease Control and Prevention , flu activity increased in the past week, and widespread activity's been reported in 35 states including Kentucky. 

CDC officials say more than 60 percent of cases are affecting those between the ages of 18 and 64.

The Kentucky Department for Public Health officials reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week that the influenza activity level in the state has increased from regional to widespread. Widespread activity is the highest level of flu activity, which indicates increased flu-like activity or flu outbreaks in at least half of the regions in the state. The activity levels for states are tracked weekly as part of the CDC's national flu surveillance system.

"With current widespread flu activity being reported in Kentucky and across much of the nation, now is a good time to protect yourself and your family by getting vaccinated for flu," said Stephanie Mayfield, M.D., commissioner of DPH. "We are strongly urging anyone who hasn't received a flu vaccine, particularly those at high risk for complications related to the flu, to check with their health care provider, local health department or pharmacy about vaccine availability."

The flu season can begin as early as October, which is when Kentucky reported its first cases this year, and last through May. January is still a good time to get vaccinated against the flu because peak activity often comes in the early months of the year. Vaccination can be given any time during the flu season, and there is a plentiful vaccine supply this season. Since it takes approximately two weeks for vaccine to become fully effective, Kentuckians should not delay vaccination, Dr. Mayfield said.

During the current flu season, CDC has received a number of reports of severe respiratory illness among young and middle-aged adults infected with the influenza A (H1N1) pandemic strain, which first emerged in 2009.

Healthy, non-pregnant people age 2-49 years can be vaccinated with either the flu shot or the nasal vaccine spray. An intradermal influenza vaccination uses a smaller needle and can be given to adults 18 through 64 years of age. Children younger than 9 years old who did not receive a flu vaccination during the last flu season should receive a second dose four or more weeks after their first vaccination.

For more information on influenza or the availability of flu vaccine, please contact your local health department or visit http://healthalerts.ky.gov.

Rita Dukes Smith
SurfKY News Director

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

3/13 - 16
1 DOW 17,164.95
-251.90 (-1.45%)    
2 S&P 1,994.99
-26.26 (-1.30%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,635.24
-48.17 (-1.03%)    

In Other News...

Merle Travis Fans Pay Tribute to Thumbpicking Legend

POWDERLY, Ky. (1/31/15) — Merle Travis had to be smiling down from thumbpicking heaven Saturday when numerous musicians… Read More

UPDATED GAME STORY: Muhlenberg Mustangs Trample Visiting Apollo Eagles

MUHLENBERG COUNTY, Ky. (1/31/15) — After facing a deficit at the conclusion of each of the first two quarters, host… Read More
3/13 - 16

Most Read This Week

January 28, 2015 18035

UPDATED: Several Involved in Two-Vehicle Accident

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
January 26, 2015 9024

KSP Arrests Two on Child Porn Charges; MPD…

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Trooper Stu Recke
January 25, 2015 8547

Dean’s List Announced

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Joyce Riggs
January 28, 2015 7193

Nortonville Man Accused of Meth Possession,…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department/Hopkins County Detention Center
January 26, 2015 6640

School Board Votes 3-2 for Utility Tax

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
January 25, 2015 6298

Juvenile Hit by Vehicle at McDonald's

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by GPD Officer Wes Miller
January 28, 2015 6217

Tax Recall Committee Formed Day After School…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
January 29, 2015 6203

Man Charged with Sexual Abuse of Child

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

January 08, 2015 23462

Woman Claiming to be 'Lady Gaga' Tours Town in…

in Top News For All Sites by Madisonville Police Department
January 15, 2015 23066

UPDATE: Fatality Victim's Name Officially Released

in Top News For All Sites by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News

Stories Trending Today

January 30, 2015 5771

More Than 800 Gather to Encircle HCCHS

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
January 31, 2015 5764

24-Year-Old Killed in One-Vehicle Collision

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
January 30, 2015 5165

Woman Arrested for Allegedly Attacking Police…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department/Hopkins County Detention Center
January 30, 2015 2362

No One Left Behind: The Story of 'Sarge'

in General News For All Sites by Lisa Aug
January 30, 2015 2349

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Jan. 30, 2015

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
January 30, 2015 2309

Hopkins County Sheriff's Arrest Reports - Jan.…

in Hopkins News by Hopkins County Sheriff's Office
January 29, 2015 2275

Lt. Gov. Luallen, Housing, Veterans Officials…

in General News For All Sites by Office of the Governor
January 30, 2015 2192

Central City Crave Movement Makes Impact in…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
January 30, 2015 2070

WKWIB, GRADD, Owensboro's RAE Get Workforce Grants

in General News For All Sites by Kim Brannock
January 30, 2015 1916

Whitfield Works for Protection of U.S. Waters…

in General News For All Sites by Marty Irby
January 30, 2015 1883

Col. Stephen Trigg Chapter SAR Honors Former…

in General News For All Sites by Geoff Baggett
January 30, 2015 1630

Madisonville Fire Reports – Jan. 30, 2015

in Hopkins News by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News