TARRANT COUNTY (CBSDFW) – Today, officials with Tarrant County Public Health (TCPH) confirmed three flu-related deaths in the county.
The three flu-related deaths are the first ones in Tarrant County in a flu season that has gripped North Texas.
All three deaths involved senior adults (55 years and older) with underlying medical conditions. The organization didn’t release any further information about the victims’ medical history.
“It’s safe to say that we are currently experiencing a flu outbreak and these three voluntarily reported flu-related deaths reflect that,” said Chief Epidemiologist Russell Jones. “This season is a mirrored reflection of 2013-2014, which was one of the more serious flu seasons of the past decade. Recognizing the early symptoms of this disease and consulting your healthcare provider, so you can get on an antiviral medicine like Tamiflu or Relenza, is advice that could lessen the severity of the disease for you.”
The Tarrant County-based Fort Worth Independent School District (FWISD) is taking extra precautions to keep students, teachers and staff safe. As everyone returned from winter break, soap and hand sanitizer were handed out at schools. The district has also been sending parents messages, by telephone, text, email, and on social media, suggesting ways to help minimize exposure to the flu.
Administrators with the FWISD are asking students who are sick to stay home and wait 24 hours after their fever returns to normal before returning to school. District spokesman Clint Bond said, “We know when it comes right down to it it may be that we do have a lot of absences, but this is at least an attempt to try and minimize that.”