South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) has confirmed there has been a flu-related death in the Lowcountry.
"Sadly, an individual from the Lowcountry has died from complications due to the flu," said Dr. Lilian Peak, DHEC director of public health in a press release.
"This is our first lab-confirmed, influenza-associated death of the season. Unfortunately, we see many deaths, hospitalization and other serious complications of flu each year in South Carolina," Peake said.
Those at high risk of serious flu complications include young children, pregnant women, those with chronic health conditions, and people 65 years and older, Peake said in the release.
Preventative measures against the flu, included in the press release, are limiting contact with others while sick, covering your mouth or nose when you cough or sneeze, and washing your hands often with soap and water.
"Flu activity is unpredictable each year, so we need to prepare for several months of the virus circulating in our communities," Peake said in the release. "The most common strains of the flu virus that circulate can change every year, so it's important to get the current flu vaccine each year for the best protection. Therefore, we strongly encourage people to get vaccinated now to prevent the flu and its potentially serious consequences. The vaccine takes about two weeks to build up your body's protection against the virus."