Flu season not yet over as 3 more die in Denton County

DENTON COUNTY - Just when we thought the flu was coming to an end, more flu-related deaths are being reported in North Texas.

Denton County health officials have confirmed three more flu deaths. This raises the county's flu-related deaths to 12.

There have been one 119 flu deaths so far in North Texas this season, including 69 deaths in Dallas County.

But the deadly grip of the flu season appears to be weakening, according to statistics released Friday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

During the seventh week of the year, 6.4% of people who visited their doctors complained of flu-like illness, the CDC said in its weekly surveillance report. That number is down from the previous week, when it was 7.5%. It's the first time this season the number has dropped.

"It's definitely an encouraging sign," CDC spokeswoman Kristen Nordlund said. But she added that "half of the country is still experiencing high activity, and it's still widespread everywhere, so we're still in the thick of it."

"We're just not ready to say that we've peaked yet."

Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease specialist at Vanderbilt University, predicted, "It will go well into March."