A 6-year-old Haverhill, Massachusetts girl has died from influenza, and her school is now taking precautions to prevent other cases.
The state’s department of public health announced late Tuesday afternoon the first influenza-associated death of a child in Massachusetts this season that had been confirmed by clinical tests and the symptoms shown.
Delilah Lovelace was a first grade student at Golden Hill Elementary.
The superintendent of the district said they were informed of the young girl's death earlier this week, and are working to "throroughly clean and sanitize" schools as a precaution.
"I hope we can all join together and keep this beautiful young lady and her family in our thoughts and prayers," James Scully, Haverhill superintendent, said in a statement.
As of Feb. 3, 63 children nationwide had died from the flu this season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
"This is a tragic reminder of how serious the flu can be for some people," DPH Commissioner Monica Bharel said in a statement. "Every flu season is different, but every flu season is bad. This one arrived early and continues to spread, leading many people throughout the Commonwealth to get sick."
The DPH says 250 to 1,100 people die from complications of the flu in Massachusetts every year. The department is urging people to get flu shots and to seek treatment if they think they have the flu.
Common symptoms of influenza include fevers, coughs, sore throats, body aches, headaches, chills and runny noses, the DPH noted.