Wisconsin health officials confirm first pediatric flu-related death of the season

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MADISON, Wis. The Department of Health Services says a child has died from influenza, the first pediatric flu-related death reported in Wisconsin for the 2019-2020 season.

DHS influenza surveillance coordinator Tom Haupt says the patient – who was younger than 10 years old – died on the way to a hospital in southeastern Wisconsin. Haupt said the child had moved to Wisconsin from another state in the last couple months, and it’s unclear if they were vaccinated.

Haupt did not disclose more about the child’s identity in order to protect the family. There’s no word on exactly when the child died.

According to DHS, the child tested positive for influenza B, the strain that’s been rapidly spreading and increasingly problematic around the country, particularly in younger patients.

Haupt stressed to reporters Friday that the best way to prevent the flu from spreading is to get vaccinated.