First flu death of season in Washington



KENNEWICK — A Tri-Cities woman in her 50s is the first flu death of the season in Washington.

State Health Department spokesman Marqise Allen says she died in the past week.

Benton-Franklin health officer Dr. Amy Person told Tri-City Herald the woman had chronic medical conditions that put her at higher risk for complications from influenza.

About three dozen people in Washington died of the flu in the last season, which peaks in the winter. The most state flu deaths in recent years were 98 in the swine flu season of 2009-2010.

Health officials recommend flu vaccine shots for everyone over 6 months old.