Unvaccinated child dies of flu, Florida health officials say

An unidentified child in Florida has died after testing positive for influenza in the first week of the 2018-2019 flu season, state health officials said.

The child, who was not identified, had no known underlying medical conditions, according to the Florida Department of Health's Bureau of Epidemiology. The child was not vaccinated and tested positive for influenza B at an unidentified health care provider sometime between Sept. 30 and Oct. 6, officials said in a report issued Friday.

2017 study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found vaccination against influenza reduced a child's likelihood of dying of the flu by as much as 65 percent.

“Children, especially those with certain health conditions, are at increased risk of severe complications from influenza infection,” according to Florida health officials. “Most deaths are reported in unvaccinated children.”

Between Sept. 30 and Oct. 6, state health officials received two reports of influenza or influenza-like illness outbreaks in Florida schools or camps for children. Officials noted that no children were hospitalized or killed as a result of the outbreaks.

About the Author