ARKANSAS (KFSM) — 31 people have now died from influenza in Arkansas this flu season according to the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH).
The ADH’s weekly flu report noted that the state has reported “widespread” activity to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for a geographic spread and a “high” level of intensity.
Since September 30, 2018, over 15,200 positive influenza tests have been reported to the ADH online database by health care providers. Last week, the number of tests reported was 11,400, increasing by 3,800 in one week.
In week seven, 71 counties reported influenza cases. The majority of reports came from Benton, Pulaski, Sebastian, Craighead, Faulkner, Washington, Lonoke, Saline, Scott, White, Yell, Crawford, Johnson, Logan, and Garland.
The average school absenteeism rate last week was 7.0 percent among public schools. ADH says that 11 schools closed briefly because of the flu.
The CDC has reported a total of 34 pediatric deaths nationwide this season.
Among flu antigen tests that can distinguish between influenza A and B virus types, 92 percent were influenza A, and 8 percent were influenza B.
No reports of influenza outbreaks have been reported from nursing homes or other facilities this season.