Ultimately, about 61,000 Americans died, making it one of the longest and most deadly flu seasons in years.
The B strain "is particularly unsafe for young children", King County and Seattle public health officials said in a release on Wednesday that announced the death of an elementary school child in King County who died from complications of the flu on December 15, becoming the first pediatric flu death in that county in a decade.
A year ago influenza caused 123 hospitalizations, 12 admissions to the intensive care unit and nine deaths in the province.
They have a a higher than usual share of the 262 flu-related hospitalizations reported so far this season, although none of the deaths involved children. The type of virus that's circulating may be the explanation.
This year, we're seeing influenza B, which is slightly milder, but more likely to affect children. Nationally, the most cases have been from the influenza B/Victoria viruses.
But influenza B doesn't let the youngsters off the hook.
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"Getting vaccinated later, however, can still be beneficial and vaccination should continue to be offered throughout the flu season, even into January or later", the agency said. "For kids, influenza B can be just as bad as influenza A".
In 2018, we saw a double dose of influenza A.
Edmonton has only seen 68 cases of influenza B, but is getting hit much harder by Influenza A, with 203 reported cases.
Peak flu season is usually between December and February, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but it can still be beneficial to get a flu shot.
In the same time period, 241 Albertans have been admitted to hospital with lab-confirmed cases of the flu.
"Our results imply that employment in service industries - particularly retail and health care - is a particularly strong mechanism for flu spread", Nesson said. "Now is the time to get an immunisation if you haven't already".