- Katie Hall American-Statesman Staff
Flu season is on the rise in Texas earlier than usual, and amid reports that two people died from the flu last month in Travis County, health officials are making the case that getting the flu shot this winter is particularly worthwhile.
At this point in the flu season last year, Texas doctors had reported about 10,300 instances in which patients were exhibiting flu-like symptoms, according to reports sent to the Texas Department of State Health Services. This year, that number is higher than 14,700.
That spike is reflected in some parts of Central Texas as well, according to officials in Travis, Williamson and Hays counties. In Travis County, two people died last month after experiencing complications from the flu, according to county health officials. They declined to release the victims’ exact ages, but said they were both over 50.
Seeing a high number of cases early in the season “is always going to concern us because it means it’s a severe season. It’s going to last longer and more people are going to get sick,” said Dr. Ross Tobleman, who works in the emergency department of Baylor Scott & White Medical Center in Round Rock.