Flu Season Death Rate At Epidemic Level — CDC

Govt revises class suspension rules for flu-hit schools

Schumer (D-N.Y.), the Senate minority leader, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should designate a "domestic flu surveillance team" for NY state.

"For a lot of them, their symptoms are milder", said Dr. Tiffany Knipe. The most common strain circulating here and across the United States is H3N2, which causes more severe illness.

The flu can be especially risky for children, the elderly and people with existing health conditions such as asthma, heart disease and diabetes.

The first and most important step in preventing flu is to get a flu vaccination each year. But exactly how well it is working won't be known until next month.

"With record-setting highs this season, it's absolutely critical that NY have the resources it needs to track the flu's path, gather intelligence and combat this powerful virus", Schumer said. It's not clear why this season - with the same bug - is worse, some experts said.

It may be that numerous people getting sick this year managed to avoid infection last year. Mortality rates, which trail infections, spiked sharply, with seven additional children dying from the infection over the past week, said CDC Director Brenda Fitzgerald. Getting a flu shot early in the season, which starts around October, is a good idea, as well, she said. There are some places, like California, where the season already seems to be easing, CDC officials said. "But I've lost money on bets before". Young children and the elderly are at greatest risk from flu and its complications.

There are several factors that make this flu season more risky than others.

The Centers for Disease Control recommends that children 6 months and older get vaccinated for influenza.

Conrad likened the decision to have a less-than-perfect flu shot to not wearing a seat beat at all, or wearing it 30 percent of the time.

Influenza A (H3) is the most common flu strain this year in Florida. She missed two days of work at a NY law firm, and felt bad for about 10 days. "It's been 22 years since I felt that badly".

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