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Beaumont health officials suspect 3 more flu deaths - 12 News KBMT and K-JAC. News, Weather and Sports for SE Texas

2 confirmed dead from flu; Beaumont officials awaiting tests from 3 more deceased

12 News has learned the Beaumont Health Department is awaiting lab results from three people who recently died in a local hospital to confirm if they died from a strain of H1N1.

Sheri Ulmer confirms two people are confirmed to have died from the flu in the last two weeks, and they are waiting on test results on another three who died in recent days.

Ulmer says all five people have died since December 13, and all five have died at Christus Hospital St. Elizabeth in Beaumont. Ulmer says that doesn't mean there have not been additional deaths in other hospitals, but that the other hospitals may not yet have reported them because of the holidays.

She says the first three were residents from Jasper County, Bexar County and Hardin County. 

She says all five of the deceased showed similar symptoms, which included shortness of breath and pressure in the chest. 

Ulmer says this strain of flu is not a new one and has been covered by flu shots since 2009, so she encourages everyone to get a shot. 

According to the CDC, Texas is experiencing a high level of flu activity throughout the state. Lousiana, Alabama, and Mississippi are also considered high.
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