One person has died amid a rise in flu activity that has yielded 53 lab-confirmed cases over the past two weeks, according to Waterloo Region's public health department.

Public health says the deceased was an adult aged 40-64 with underlying medical conditions and an unknown immunization status.

Of the 53 confirmed cases, there have been 18 hospitalizations.

Kristy Wright, manager of the infectious disease program at Region of Waterloo Public Health, said 20 cases of influenza were of the H1N1 strain.

“It has continued to circulate as a seasonal strain of influenza so it’s nothing new to us,” said Wright. “We do see bits of H1N1 each year.”

Despite the increase in cases for this year, Wright says overall the flu numbers for the 2013/2014 flu season are lower than previous ones.

“At this time last year, we had over 200 cases,” said Wright. “And I think we ended up with over 300 cases by the end of the season.”

Those who wish to receive a flu shot can get them through family doctors, urgent care clinics and local pharmacies.