First flu death of season in Pierce County

A man in his 70's died of the flu Tuesday in Pierce County's first flu-related death of the season.

The man had chronic conditions that increased his complications with the flu.

“People can underestimate the severity of the flu, especially for the elderly or others with compromised immune systems," said Nigel Turner, director of Communicable Disease Control at the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department.

Last year was one of the worse flu seasons in recent memory, according to Tacoma-Pierce County Health officials. There were 50 flu-related deaths in 2016 alone, which health officials says was as many as the three previous flu seasons combined.

Related: Flu facts from Tacoma-Pierce County Health

Health officials suggest that regardless of the age people should get flu shots.

You can get a flu shot at many local pharmacies. Also, check with your healthcare provider about the vaccine. Flu vaccines can take up to two weeks to take effect.

© 2017 KING-TV


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