A devastated family mourns the loss of their 4-year-old daughter who died mere days after being diagnosed with flu.
In Garland, Texas, Martell Grinage is still in shock following his daughter, Ashanti’s death. In prior good health, Ashanti became the first pediatric patient to have suffered a flu-related death this season.
While Ashanti’s mother got hospitalized for flu-like symptoms, the Grinage family tried to come to grips with their sudden loss.
According to Ashanti’s father, Martell, she began showing symptoms of a cold on Sunday evening when the family got back from church. By Tuesday the 4-year-old developed a 103-degree fever.
The trip to the emergency room was cause for further testing which revealed that Ashanti had Flu type A, and had no prior flu vaccine.
Doctors kept an eye on Ashanti until the fever subsided and sent her home with recommendations for over the counter medication for her sore throat, and to keep her temperature down.
The following day, little Ashanti still had mild symptoms, but her fever had broken. But on Thursday, Ashanti’s extreme lethargy had her mom take her back to the emergency room. A diagnosis of pneumonia got made soon after, but it was too late, as Ashanti died later that day.
Pneumonia got blamed for Ashanti’s death, and sometimes develop during or after the flu. In hindsight, Grinage wished he had insisted on more elaborate testing the first time they took their daughter to the emergency room and said:
"I'm mad at myself. I'm mad at everyone. I'm mad at the hospital. I'm mad at God. I can't lie to you."
Heartbroken, Grinage expressed his feelings:
"See, I feel like I failed because I'm not even 30 yet, and I'm about to bury my little girl. That was my best friend. She was only four, but that was my best friend."
page got set up for the Grinage family by Ashanti’s aunt, and ask for prayers andcontributions
to medical expenses for the family.
Meanwhile, Dr. Christopher Perkins from Dallas County Health and Human Services called upon anyone who hasn’t received a flu vaccine, to get one as soon as possible and added:
“We cannot predict the intensity, severity or duration of the flu season from year to year. The best way to protect yourself and others is to get your seasonal flu shot.”
Last year the CDC also urged that anyone over six months old should get vaccinated. In 2017, an estimate of 80,000 people died of the flu, while thousands of children got hospitalized due to flu complications.
According to a new study, it makes sense why only 50% of Americans adhere to flu vaccination. Over half of 700 parents who participated in the Orlando Health Arnold Palmer Hospital survey believe that the flu vaccine causes flu, while a third didn’t believe in its efficacy at all.
The CDC fights an uphill battle in dispelling misconceptions regarding the vaccinations. The vaccine is not made from live viruses, and can therefore not cause any illness.
Without the innoculations, our bodies have little resistance against mutated viruses and illness, and therefore need help in fighting them off. We have no natural antibodies against many of these flu variations, which makes it imperative to get vaccinated.
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