Health officials: Flu, strep caused deaths in Va.

ROANOKE, Va. (AP) — Health officials say the illness that killed two members of a Pulaski County family and hospitalized others was not hantavirus as previously suspected.

The Roanoke Times reports (http://bit.ly/1n46JDT) that New River Health District Director Dr. Molly O'Dell says the pair died Friday from a combination of flu and strep.

O'Dell says co-infection is very rare and can be serious. Officials have not identified any of the victims.

Pulaski County emergency management officials had previously said the illness could be hantavirus.

Hantavirus is a rodent-borne illness. Infected people usually have flu-like symptoms including fever, shortness of breath, chills and muscle and body aches.

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Information from: The Roanoke Times, http://www.roanoke.com

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