North Carolina health officials report 30 people died of complications from the flu last week. This is more than double the number of the previous week and raises the death toll for the season to 54.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reports all of the deaths for the latest reporting period involved people 65 and older. Of the 54 deaths, 42 have involved people in that age range.
Last week, the state reported 14 flu-related deaths.
There have been only two deaths involving people between the ages of 5 and 17, the latest one occurring in November.
Earlier this week, health officials said that the flu season appeared to be peaking about a month earlier than normal.
In the past two weeks, the Triad's four major hospitals — Forsyth and Wake Forest Baptist medical centers in Winston-Salem, Moses Cone in Greensboro, and High Point Regional — have restricted visitor access for those under the age of 18 unless they are receiving care or visiting a dying family member.
The restrictions also affect the Triad community hospitals affiliated with Cone Health, Forsyth and Wake Forest Baptist.