Flu-related illnesses remain widespread through the state, according to new data released by the Minnesota Department of Health.
While the number of outbreaks at schools has slowed compared to the weeks leading up to Christmas, the number of flu-related deaths in Minnesota doubled.
Eight people died in Minnesota due to flu-related illnesses as of Dec. 28, but that number now stands at 16 deaths as of Jan. 4. The average age of the 16 people who died because of flu-related illness is 80 years old, according to the data.
Overall, 751 people have been hospitalized due to the flu or flu-like symptoms, with 171 between Dec. 29 and Jan. 4 – the second-highest weekly total, slightly behind the 193 hospitalizations during the week ending Dec. 28.
There were nine new school outbreaks this week compared to zero new outbreaks at K-12 schools statewide the week prior. To date (the past 14 weeks), there have been 308 schools to report flu-related illness outbreaks, the majority of them in the two weeks leading up to the New Year.