St. Paul, MN (KROC-AM News) - While the emerging threats from the new coronavirus dominate the news, influenza has claimed the lives of another 15 people in Minnesota.

The State Department of Health, in its weekly update on flu activity, indicated that it received 15 reports of flu-related deaths during the week that ended March 7th. One of the deaths involved a child, which was the third pediatric flu-related death in Minnesota since the start of the season last fall. The overall death toll for the current flu season now stands at 110.

The number of hospitalizations for flu-related complications continued to decline. The preliminary total for the week is 263, compared with 395 the previous week. The total number of hospitalizations for the season is now over 3500.

There were 22 reports of flu outbreaks in Minnesota schools. That was half the total from the previous week. 11 outbreaks were reported by Minnesota nursing homes and other long-term care facilities. The total for the previous week was 10.

The weekly report also shows declines in 2 key indicators. The percentage of people showing up at outpatient clinics with flu-like symptoms and the percentage of positive results on samples submitted for lab testing both dropped during the past week.

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