Deaths from the flu are a lot more common than people think. In the 2009 H1N1 Flu Pandemic, over 12,000 people died in the United States from the 2009 flu strain, this according to the Centers for Disease Control. Worldwide, the number of deaths is estimated to be at least half a million people.
Even in a non-pandemic year, people are still dying from the flu, usually from complications of pneumonia and chronic medical conditions. Experts cite that at least 36,000 people a year die from the flu or flu complications every year.
In the 2014-15 U.S. flu season, there were 141 pediatric deaths from the flu. And these numbers aren’t all kids with risk factors, such as asthma or a chronic illness. Reports have shown that at least half of the children who have died from the flu have no risk factors for flu complications.
Risk Factors for Certain People
You need to take special care to avoid the flu if you have a chronic long term condition, such as an autoimmune disease, diabetes, cancer, heart disease or HIV/AIDS. The same is true for if you are pregnant or over age 65. Children are also at a higher risk. Having any of these risk factors makes you more likely than other people to have complications, such as pneumonia from the flu. Without medical care, these problems can become life threatening.
Preventing Flu Deaths
The best way to prevent flu deaths is to avoid getting sick with the flu in the first place. You can try to avoid the flu by staying away from people who are sick and by washing your hands frequently. However, the best and easiest way is to get a yearly flu vaccine.
Misinformation about the Flu
Misinformation is often a reason people are at a higher risks for illnesses, including the flu. The Bankers Healthcare Group, a company dedicated to providing physician loans, has partnered up with doctors around the country and bloggers to help pass along the right information about the flu and debunk the myths.
The graphic below discredits the myths about the flu and provides information about how you can protect yourself from the flu and its complications.