MARSHALL, TX (KSLA) - An East Texas teenager has been admitted to Texas children's hospital in Dallas following complications with the flu.
According to a close family member, 14-year-old Jennings Neel of Marshall felt bad the day after Christmas and went to the doctor, where she tested positive for the flu. She was sent home with medications, but deteriorated quickly by the following morning.
The Tatum High School freshman was airlifted from the hospital in Marshall on Saturday to Children's Hospital in Dallas, where she is said to be in critical condition. According to a Caring Bridge page set up for friends and family, Neel has acute pneumonia as a complication from having the flu. They say doctors at Children's determined that she needed to be placed on a lung bypass to help her body fight the infection.
"Jennings situation is critical," according to the Caring Bridge page, "but her family has strong faith in God, knowing He is in control, and remains hopeful that she will recover. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement during this time when it matters most."
Texas has reported one of the highest numbers of cases of influenza-like illness in the nation. Just before Christmas, health officials confirmed that 2 Gregg County residents have died from the H1N1 virus.
East Texas health officials said they are stocked up on the vaccine and recommend everyone get it before the peak of flu season in January or February.