DefinitionDeaths from influenza and pneumonia (underlying cause with ICD10: J09-J18) per 100,000 population, age-adjusted.
NumeratorNumber of pneumonia and influenza deaths
DenominatorNumber of persons in the population
Why Is This Important?Influenza (flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. Illness from influenza viruses can be severe and can lead to complications such as pneumonia and death. (1). Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs due to a variety of causes that can also be severe and lead to complications, including death. Some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at higher risk for serious complications and death from influenza and pneumonia. In 2012, Pneumonia and/or influenza were the 10th leading cause of death as underlying causes of death in New Mexico. Among the high risk populations they were the 6th and 8th leading causes for young children (1-4 years) and older adults (85+ years), respectively. (2)
Other ObjectivesRelated to Healthy People 2020 Objective IID-12:
Increase the percentage of children and adults who are vaccinated annually against seasonal influenza.
New Mexico Community Health Status Indicator (CHSI)
Evidence-based PracticesYearly influenza vaccination is a proven way to prevent many individuals from getting the flu and to decrease the severity and complications from flu. It is recommended that everyone 6 months and older receive the vaccine. (3)
Certain vaccines help prevent some types of pneumonia.
Good hygiene practices can also help prevent respiratory infections such as influenza and pneumonia. Good hygiene for prevention of respiratory infections includes washing your hands regularly, cleaning hard surfaces that are touched often (like doorknobs and countertops), and coughing or sneezing into a tissue or into your elbow or sleeve. You can also reduce your risk of getting pneumonia by staying healthy (preventing chronic illnesses such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS) and limiting exposure to cigarette smoke. (4)